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Your Parent's Estate

Estate Planning for The Family Assets

I meet with many parents and their children regarding estate planning for the parents and discover that the children do not know what assets their parent owns, what debts the parents may have, or the amount and source of the parent’s income.

closing parents estate Have you had this discussion with your children? Have you had this discussion with your parents?

I recommend that the parents prepare a statement of their assets, debts, income, and life & health insurance policies. The statement can be provided to the children that shall be acting pursuant to the parent’s power of attorney, or who shall be serving as the executor of the parent’s estate after their death. The statement should be update annually by the parents.

It's helpful to identify the location of documents such as the life insurance policies, deeds, income tax returns, auto titles, etc. For example, the statement can indicate that “My life insurance policy is located in the top drawer of the desk in my living room”.

Acting now with this issue will save time and money when you have to assume control of your parent’s finances in the future.

What you have done to make this process easier? Do you have any comments regarding what has worked, or not worked, for you in handling your parent’s finances?