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Talk to family members about your estate

Estate planning is an awkward step that almost every adult takes. We don’t like to think about life after we pass, but it’s a future we need to plan for. Many aspects of estate planning involves family and how your estate disperses amongst your beneficiaries.

A smart move to take is to talk to different family members or your spouse about your estate plan. What are your final wishes? Or who will get your prized family heirloom once you’re gone? All these questions and more in a simple conversation with your beneficiaries.

What will be in your will?

A will can either be a straightforward document or a complicated mess, depending on your family situation. There are many adults with blended households with multiple generations or a large, extended family.

Having a large family means you may have to divide out your assets across several different people, or you might have to make tough choices on who receives your home or the finances after you pass. Talk to your family about your will, so they know what to expect and how to tackle negotiations after death.

Who should make healthcare decisions for you?

Estate plans to involve more than where your assets go. It includes many factors that affect your life. For example, a plan states who is allowed to make medical decisions on your behalf if you cannot do so yourself.

Whether it’s a spouse or a child, you will want to talk with them about your wishes in case of a life-threatening illness or a coma. It will make the process easier for your representative if, or when, the time comes.

What about final wishes?

There is also a meaningful discussion about your funeral. It seems morbid to talk about with your family about life after you’re gone, but it only eases the burden of significant decisions on your partner or other family members. You can discuss all the options surrounding a burial, funeral, etc. And express yourself freely on what you want at your funeral.

The conversation may also address other estate concerns such as your retirement, trusts you want to establish or even inheritance. No matter how the conversation goes, it will only ease the estate planning process for you and all your beneficiaries.

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