Chipman Mazzucco Emerson LLC

How parents can help their children with estate planning

Some parents and their adult children in Connecticut may encounter some friction over estate planning. Many baby boomers feel that their children need to create estate plans. However, these children may feel too overwhelmed by debt and other issues to address this. For some families, the solution is for the parents to pay for the estate plan. In such situations, most adult children will follow through on the process.

However, it is necessary for parents to be careful and respectful in how they raise estate planning issues. Family dynamics can be tricky. That's why parents may want to consider raising the issue when a family member dies or a child is born. A family meeting that includes a third party can also be helpful, but children may object if they feel their parents are trying to push them into something. Parents must choose their time and approach carefully.

This is not the only boundary parents must respect. They also must realize that paying for the estate plan does not include the right to know what it is in the plan. While children can authorize access to the plan, some parents may be shut out.

There are a number of estate planning considerations for people at any age. At minimum, they might want to have a will, which specifies who will get what assets, and powers of attorney that appoint someone to take over medical and financial decisions in cases of incapacitation. In addition, trusts can be created to protect assets for minor children, control how distributions are made and take care of loved ones who have special needs.

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