Your estate plan dictates how your assets will be divided upon your death. This is something that is very personal to you, but it will also impact those you love. Thus, it can be beneficial to discuss estate planning matters with your family before you codify them.
Of course, this is much easier said than done. Talking to your family about estate planning can be daunting. The following tips can help.
Structure the conversation
All families are different, and there is no one size fits all approach to talking about estate planning. Would it be better to gather everyone in a group and have a discussion together or is it possible that someone might become upset? Will anyone feel left out if you approach your family members one at a time?
Nobody knows your family better than you. As long as you make your intentions clear, this will help your loved ones understand your decisions.
Identify potentially problematic areas
Do you intend to leave one child more money than the others? Something you definitely want to avoid is disputes further down the line over your estate plan. There may be legitimate reasons for leaving a larger sum of money to one family member.
For example, they may have been struggling with illness in recent years and are unable to work full-time. They may have a child with substantial medical bills both now and in the future. Again, identifying the potential problems and addressing them tactfully will help to avoid family disputes.
Once you’ve had a discussion with your family, you need to start thinking about setting up your estate plan. Make sure you have legal guidance on your side during this process.