Estate planning can be a difficult thing to navigate with loved ones, but trust us, it’s even more difficult to navigate a loved one’s death when the family doesn’t know the deceased’s plans. This is why we encourage our Raleigh clients to make sure they discuss estate plans with their loved ones. We’ll even go as far as recommending a specific family meeting (perhaps virtually right now) to make sure the topic is thoroughly covered.
Here are four reasons why having a family meeting to discuss estate plans is a smart idea:
- Everyone is on the same page: Getting everyone together ensures that everyone is getting the same information, in the same manner, at the same time. Nothing is being left out for one party, and nobody gets to add to it.
- Gives the family time to understand your wishes: Sometimes, part of the estate plan may be surprising to a family. Perhaps the originator wants to leave a substantial amount to a charity or prefers cremation when the family norm has been burial. Having these discussions will give loved ones time to get used to the plans. Sometimes, if loved ones are surprised by the estate plan, they may think it was a mistake and not honor the request.
- Raise concerns you may have overlooked: The family meeting can also raise questions that the originator didn’t know would come up. Having different people know the plan can ensure that any gaps may be filled or any concerns can be addressed.
- Normalize the topic: Many people shy away from discussing estate plans because it brings up the subject of death. However, when having these conversations, it should be seen as a discussion about the family and the person’s legacy.
An estate plan is essential, but communicating it to loved ones is just as important as having one. For assistance with your estate plan, contact Thornton Law Firm.