It is never too early (or too late) to start talking about estate planning. While the topic can be a difficult one to approach with your parents or elderly loved ones, it needs to happen.Without the proper estate plan in place, you may be waiting to make decisions that can no longer be made by an elderly loved one.
Avoid the difficulties that waiting can add to the process. Here are some ways to approach having the talk about estate planning with your family.
Focus on the Entire Family
A good way to start is to take the focus away from your elderly loved one. An estate plan not only protects your elderly loved ones, it is a shield for your entire family. Creditors, scammers and predators can all take advantage of an elderly person’s situation. When this happens, it can place a burden on the entire family.
The right estate plan not only protects your elderly loved one, but the entire family from financial issues. That is one of the major reasons to have one in place.
Focus on the Living
While an estate plan will necessarily delve into matters that occur after your loved one is gone, it is also about what is going to happen for the rest of that person’s life.
Start the discussion on how to best use the assets that are available in order to live the best life possible. Use the estate plan as a way to guard these assets and use them most effectively. Focus on living well instead of simply talking about dying well.
Start a Discussion about Their Wishes
An estate plan is all about making decisions. Sometimes those decisions need to be made by someone else because your loved ones are incapacitated and incapable of making decisions on their own.
Having a discussion about their wishes will help those whom are put in charge make the choices that your loved ones would want them to make. You can also focus on who they would like to make decisions for them, should they become too ill or incapacitated to make decisions on their own.
Ask your loved ones what they would like you to do in the event of an emergency. Make sure you know how they want their finances and affairs handled if they can’t make their decisions on their own.
Get the Location of Critical Documents
Have your loved ones make a list of the locations of all of their critical paperwork. You should also have a list of their bank and retirement accounts, as well as any online information that is important. That list can be used in the case of an emergency when you need quick access to assets or information to help them.
Get the Right Elder Law Attorney
Stano Law group has years of experience helping families come up with the right estate plans for them.Contact us today for help with your estate plan.