Although it may be a difficult subject to bring up, it’s a lot easier to carry out your parent’s final wishes when you know what they are. Furthermore, asking about your mother or father’s estate planning goals can help you determine what you might want to do with a car, Connecticut home or other items that you are in line to inherit.
If your parents don’t have an estate plan
Perhaps the best reason to talk about estate planning is to ensure that your parents actually have some sort of plan in place. It’s not uncommon for people to believe that they don’t need a will or trust if their children already know what should happen to their assets. Instead, a failure to have a will, trust or other estate plan documents could make it difficult or impossible for property to be transferred to its rightful beneficiary.
Better understand your role
Your parents may want you to be their executor or otherwise have a large role in overseeing their affairs after they pass. Conversely, they may want you to stay out of that process in favor of your older sibling or another party. Talking to your parents is the only way to learn more about what they want or need from you after they pass.
Know where important documents are
A short conversation with your parents can be enough to find out where plan documents, bank records and other important documents are located. Knowing where to find what you need can help expedite the probate process if one is needed. It can also help to ensure that you get access to bank records or other accounts that you might need to close or are entitled to take possession of.
Ideally, you’ll have at least one estate planning conversation per year to ensure that you know what your parents want or need if anything happens to them. It may also be a good idea to review your own estate plan at least once a year to ensure that your needs are being met.