Do you avoid talking to your parents about their estate plan? Most of us do not want to consider the implications of planning for our parents’ estate. Despite the delicacy of this matter, it is a conversation that must happen. Having a plan in place helps ensure that their final wishes are respected and will help everyone feel more at ease about the process, and the future. Let us discuss a few ways that you can help your elderly parents navigate the estate planning process.
A person’s estate consists of all property, financial assets, businesses, personal assets, and life insurance policies; in other words, all their belongings. Without an estate plan, his or her assets will not be distributed according to his or her wishes, but will instead be distributed by the state laws of intestacy. A person is said to have died “intestate” when they have passed away without a will in place. This is one reason why it is important to have an estate plan in place. It is also important that you help ensure that your parents keep existing estate planning documents up to date. This will help their plan most accurately reflect their wishes. Help them plan for times to revisit their estate planning documents to review for anything that needs to be changed.
You should also have a conversation with your parents about how they are storing their original estate planning documents. These important documents should be kept in a safe, yet accessible, location. While the documents need to be preserved, they also need to be located should the need arise. This means you should know where the documents are and how to access them.
Help your aging parents plan ahead and make these critical decisions early to ensure they have the best possible care in any scenario. Make an appointment with our office today, and let us work together to create an estate plan that ensures their final wishes may be known and honored.