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  • Daniel Rodriguez

Including your kids in estate planning

Talking to your kids about your estate plan may be an effective way to ensure that your affairs are settled in a timely manner. It can also help to reduce the chances of family infighting, legal challenges to your California will or other negative events taking place.

Tips for approaching a conversation

It may be best to talk about your estate plan in broad terms if you have young children. For example, you can tell your kids about how money can be used to obtain freedom or to help others. If your kids are teenagers or young adults, you can talk about specific topics such as why you chose a certain person to be an executor or why your children aren’t receiving equal inheritances. You may want to consider having your financial adviser or other professionals facilitate an estate planning conversation if you don’t feel comfortable doing so yourself.

Potential benefits of regular conversations

There are several benefits of having regular estate planning conversations with your kids. For instance, you can gain insight into whether your kids want to inherit a home or car or if they would rather have the cash instead. You can also get a better idea as to who may be most capable of carrying out your plan after you pass. It is possible to hire a professional estate representative if you don’t think that your children are capable of carrying out your final wishes.

Conversations with beneficiaries will ideally be a part of your annual estate plan review. You may also want to review a will, trust or other documents to ensure that they still meet your needs. It may also be necessary to review your plan after a major life event or after a change to state or federal tax laws.

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