What Should You Talk About at Your Thanksgiving Table? Estate Planning!
With Thanksgiving rapidly approaching, you may have your mind set on turkey, football or apple pie. While the holiday is a joyous time to get the family together and be thankful, it can also be a great time to sit down and have important discussions with your loved ones.
One of the most important discussions you can have during your Thanksgiving is one about estate planning. While you may not want to have death on your mind during a time like this, it is critical to discuss your estate planning matters with your loved ones.
Why is Discussing Estate Planning so Important?
Talking with your loved ones about estate planning is very important because, ultimately, your estate plan will also have an impact on them following your death. For example, you may choose to name your children as beneficiaries in your will, therefore, it is in everyone’s best interest for them to know this information before the time of your passing.
Who Should You Have the Discussion With?
As referenced above, you should have your estate planning discussion with your loved ones – specifically those that you have chosen to be beneficiaries upon your passing. It is of high importance that every person associated with your estate plan knows what role they will have when the time comes.
What Goes into an Estate Planning Discussion?
A discussion about estate planning is not the easiest you can have, but it may well be one of the most important. Estate planning matters can be quite complicated, and there are multiple components that you should discuss with your loved ones. The various components you should strongly consider discussing include:
- Your Will
- Power of Attorney (Medical and Financial)
Discussing Your Will with Your Loved Ones
Any estate planning discussion will heavily involve talking about your will – the legal document that will decide who inherits what from you upon your death. It is key that your beneficiaries know beforehand what they should expect when you pass away.
Talking About Trusts
If you have a trust set up, it is imperative that you discuss this with both the trustee and beneficiaries. This will clear up any confusion that may arise if you do not do so, and will serve to make the probate process easier when the time comes.
If you are legally responsible for a minor, it is important to talk about who will care for that minor in the event of your passing or becoming incapacitated.
Power of Attorney: Medical and Financial
Power of Attorney is yet another key topic to discuss during the conversation. This includes both Medical Power of Attorney and Financial Power of Attorney.
Your Medical Power of Attorney will give the person you choose the authority to handle your medical decisions in the event you become unable to do so on your own. In many cases, your Medical Power of Attorney and Living Will are combined into an Advanced Healthcare Directive.
On the other hand, your Financial Power of Attorney will give someone the authority to handle your finances if you are no longer capable of doing so.
How You and Your Loved Ones Benefit from the Discussion
There is immense value in taking the time to sit down and discuss your estate plan with your loved ones. As outlined above, it is critical that everyone involved in your estate plan, regardless of their role, understands what exactly you want in the event of your death.
This discussion is also a great time to educate younger family members on what estate planning is and why it is so important.
If you need any assistance with creating an estate plan, we are here to help you – contact us today.
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Happy Thanksgiving from the Monteleon Law Group!