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Involving adult children in estate planning

Many Florida residents may feel that their estate plans are too complicated or complex to review with their family members. While discussing end-of-life matters with children isn't necessarily an easy topic of conversation, it may prove beneficial in the long-run. Involving adult children in estate planning matters can help ensure final wishes are known regarding end-of-life care and asset distribution.

Confronting these matters while still of a sound mind can certainly help children understand what is expected at the end of a parent's life and what kind of legacy one wants to leave behind. Some may put off estate planning because it seems too intimidating. There is certainly a lot to consider, such as naming beneficiaries for accounts, writing medical directives and assigning a Durable Power of Attorney. Discussing these issues with adult children may make putting the final touches on an estate plan easier to accomplish.

Some parents may have already taken care of everything required, filled out all legal documents and listed intended beneficiaries for assets. Others may not feel the need to work on an estate plan until their later years. No matter when an estate plan is completed, talking with children about it can help prepare them for the inevitable, let them know what to expect and may also prevent hard feelings.

Estate planning can take time to complete and may require modifications, particularly if done earlier in life. Florida residents who have been putting off estate planning may need some moral support and, for many, a good support system includes their children. Getting affairs in order, sooner rather than later, and explaining desired wishes to children will give them time to ask questions in order to safeguard final intentions.

Source: CBS Boston, "All About Estate Planning", Dee Lee, June 13, 2014

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