Challenging Estate Planning Conversations
In family life there are a number of “Talks” which parents need to have with their children. Remember “Where do babies come from?”
Well, much later in life, older parents need to talk to their adult children about Wills and powers-of-attorney, elder care and end-of-life decisions.
In my practice as a lawyer specialising in estate planning, I have repeatedly noticed that my older clients are generally much more willing to discuss estate planning issues than their adult children.
I have speculated as to the reasons for this, and have come up with a list of possible explanations:
- Fear of being seen as interfering in their parents’ affairs;
- Concern at how their interest in their parents’ estates may be interpreted by others;
- Discomfort at confronting the mortality of their parents;
- A recognition that parents are getting older, and perhaps their best health is behind them;
- A perception of “passing the baton” from one generation to the next.