As a boomer who is fast approaching retirement, you have created an estate plan to ensure that your wealth goes to your descendants. You also want your adult children to create estate plans to protect their finances. Many young people believe that estate planning is solely for the middle-aged or elderly who have accumulated significant assets. You know that this is not true—you wish to discuss estate planning with your kids, but you’re not sure how to broach the topic.
Tell them to expect the unexpected
Some young people feel invincible. However, older generations know that unexpected illnesses or accidents can happen to anyone. Without an estate plan in place, your millennial child’s estate would be subject to the lengthy, expensive probate process. Talk about this with your son or daughter. When discussing a will, mention that their assets may not go to the beneficiaries they would have chosen.
Discuss the death of a loved one
When a beloved relative passes away, it can open younger generations’ eyes to the reality of death. The silver lining of a loved one’s passing is that it can prompt surviving relatives to reexamine their own lives with fresh appreciation. It is an opportunity to have a frank, though sensitive, discussion about what would happen to your children’s estate if they should die without a will.
Make it about your grandchildren
Every adult should have an estate plan—especially for the sake of their children. If your kids are parents themselves, talk to them about the importance of estate-planning for your grandchildren. Emphasize that having a sound legal document in place is crucial to protect their own kids’ financial futures.
It is not always easy to discuss death and money with your son or daughter. But one uncomfortable conversation could prompt them to consult an attorney to create an estate plan. This benefit is worth it.