It can be challenging to bring up estate planning to your parents. You might not want to consider the possibility that they will pass away or that their declining health will significantly impair their capacity for clear thought and communication with you. Or you just don’t know how to convince your parents to plan an estate in Chatsworth.
However, it will be more difficult for you to deal with your parents’ estate if you don’t have this discussion now, when they are still able to communicate important financial information and instructions.
Even though having this conversation with your parents can be scary, there are a few measures you can take to make the process of estate planning for retirees in Chatsworth effective and inclusive.
Plan when to talk about it (and don’t put it off)Deciding when to address estate planning with your parents might be a difficult decision, as it is with most difficult subjects. Regardless of when you choose to do it, one thing remains true: Time is of the essence. Some people advise waiting until a significant event occurs, such as a new birth or changes to the tax code, but this is a risky strategy. Because nothing in life is certain, the right time to talk to your parents about estate planning is now.
Make sure the whole family is involved and knows the planInclude your siblings (if you have any) in the estate planning discussion you want to have with your parents. For starters, you’ll want to keep everything looking fair. Direct involvement of all siblings can also reduce any mistrust between family members. Additionally, discussing this as a family ensures that everyone is on the same page and avoids arguments when the time comes to put the plan into action.
Seek the help of an estate planner
Find someone to assist your parents if they haven’t begun the estate-planning process yet. In Chatsworth, a good place to start is by looking for an estate planning attorney or a financial planner who specializes in estate planning.
These professionals should be consulted if you have any questions about the procedure. They can assist you in determining whether your estate planning is on the right track, particularly if you reside in a state that has its own estate or inheritance taxes.
Know what you are looking for and assign who will be in charge of what
A comprehensive estate plan will include everything, including financial arrangements, a trust, and who will make healthcare decisions for the parents if they are unable to. Estate planning is divided into two parts: incapacity planning and death planning.
Incapacity planning focuses on wishes and decision-making if the parents can’t, including:
- Who makes healthcare decisions on your parents’ behalf
- A living will
- Who will control their finances when they can’t
On the other hand, make sure that the paperwork is prepared for the second part, which is death planning:
- A last will
- Know if there is a trust established
Encourage them to ask for helpNow that your parents have spent years encouraging you to make the correct decisions in life, it could seem as though the tables have turned. With estate planning, you may now be the person they look to for assistance. Your parents could be reluctant to discuss it. Or, it’s possible that parents haven’t started estate planning yet or haven’t done it sufficiently. As such, make it a point to assure them that you are there to help. It’s not easy to think about what will happen to your parents’ estate after they are gone, but a little bit of planning today can save your family a lot of stress in the future. This is a difficult conversation to have, but it’s much easier when you are working with an attorney who understands the issues you are facing and can help guide you through the process of preparing a will and other forms of estate planning.
Looking for a probate attorney in Los Angeles?
If your legal problem involves estate planning or probate administration, our attorneys at The Law Office of R. Grace Rodriguez can help. We will work with you to determine your options and advocate on your behalf for the best possible solution.
No matter what your estate planning or probate matter entails, we are here to guide you through the legal process in the Los Angeles metropolitan area and Southern California. Contact us at 818-734-7223 or send a message online using the form on this website. Initial consultations are free.