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How can you ask a parent about their estate plan?

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How can you ask a parent about their estate plan?

On Behalf of | Nov 2, 2021 | Estate Planning

As a newly-married millennial, you just had your second child and decided it was high time to make an estate plan. You should have done it before, when that first child was born, but you put it off — as so many people do.

In any case, as you create your plan, you start wondering if your own parents have made an estate plan. Or are they also putting it off and procrastinating, just like you were before? That could really create a problem for you and your siblings — and these grandchildren — if they pass away without a plan.

At the same time, though, you’re worried about bringing it up. It’s a sensitive subject and you don’t want this to come across the wrong way. How can you do it?

Bring up your own child

The birth of a child or a grandchild is a life-changing event that often makes people consider estate planning. You don’t want to sound greedy, like you’re just trying to figure out how soon you’ll get your inheritance. Instead, you can talk about trying to learn more about the future for your own child. This shifts your concern to this new baby that you and your parents care about so much.

Bring up potential problems

You can also avoid making it seem like you want anything in particular. Instead, focus on problems that could arise if your parents don’t have a plan, such as long-term disputes between you and your siblings. Tell your parents that you don’t care what you get, but you just want to make sure a plan exists so that no conflicts will come up in the future.

Have a family meeting

Another good tactic is to include everyone — siblings, parents, other grandchildren, etc. When everyone gathers to talk about it, it’s clear that you’re not trying to get anything for yourself. You just want to make sure everyone is on the same page. This can also reduce the odds of a dispute in the future.

As you can see, the key is open communication. The more everyone knows about the estate planning process, the smoother this is going to go for your family.