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Should you talk to your children about your estate plan?

When planning or revising their estate plans, many adult parents wonder if it is a good idea to include their adult children in their estate planning, and for a good reason.

There are many benefits to involving your adult children in your estate planning. Doing so can help make them feel part of your decision-making and avoid problems between siblings and others later.

If you plan to talk with your children about your estate planning and the decisions you have made for your care and theirs, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • How you present the topic to them is just as important as the topic itself, if not more. It is essential to address estate planning like any other normal part of life and reassure your children that estate planning is something most people begin doing when they are very young.
  • Present your choices in a way that communicates how much you care about them while simultaneously creating an environment for open conversation if you can be flexible and want their input.
  • Keep the conversation focused on what is most important. Your assets, healthcare choices, the people you have chosen to assist in distributing those assets and where all documentation is.

Having an open and honest conversation with your adult children about your estate planning and involving them in the process can be a beneficial and bonding experience. It is critical to address the topic rationally and without fear.

Lastly, it is essential to leave room for questions. If your children have questions about how the estate planning process works, or if they ask to meet with the person you have chosen as your executor, it can make the entire process easier for everyone.