I was recently involved in a car accident. Unfortunately, since it was my first accident, I was scatter-brained and anxious. What I did not realize at the time was that the actions you take immediately after the accident can affect a personal injury case and the outcome of that case. I wanted to find a way to share my experiences and mistakes with other. Since the Internet is so popular, I figured this would be a great way to do so. While you likely aren't planning on being in an accident soon, if you are, hopefully you remember some of the tips I share on this website.
Discussing your end-of-life plans is difficult for your friends and family. However, this is a crucial step in your estate planning. They need to know what your wishes are so that everything goes smoothly after you pass away. Whether you have to discuss the process of probate or just who gets your jewelry, these discussions need to happen. The following are some tips to help you with this difficult conversation:
How Will Your Family React?
The first step in this process is evaluating your own family and friends and gauge how they might react to such a conversation. Some people react nonchalantly to these topics, while others get very upset. You may need to have this conversation multiple times based on the personalities of your loved ones. For those who are more sensitive, you may need to have a less formal conversation than you would for those who are not as sensitive and want to ensure your business is handled appropriately.
Do You Have a Good Plan in Place?
You need to do more than just write a will when it is time to plan your estate. You do not want to miss any vital details that could complicate the process after you are gone. You need to have a formal estate plan in place with an attorney. That way, you only have to provide the attorney's information to your family to move through the process once you pass away.
Have You Thought the Conversation Through?
Once you know you want to have this conversation, be sure you completely think about what you want to say. You do not want to have this conversation in a spontaneous way. You should have a plan as to what you want to say and what information you need to convey. You also do not want to make any decisions on the fly. It is crucial that you know exactly what you intend to discuss.
When Will You Have This Conversation?
You also need to consider when you intend to have this talk with your loved ones. You need to allot enough time to discuss everything you need to say so that no one leaves with unanswered questions or confusion. Plan for this conversation to last several hours to allow for all topics to be discussed. If you are constantly looking at the clock because you have somewhere else to be, it can make everyone uncomfortable.
Talk to a probate lawyer in your area if you have any questions.