Starting the Conversation
Published Tuesday, October 15, 2019
Starting the conversation about making your Will or leaving a gift to a charity is sometimes a difficult conversation to have, but it is a very important conversation to have. Many people feel if they talk about the “d” word – death, something bad may happen.
Here are some tips to start the conversation with a Family Member:
- Have a strategy and make time to have the conversation; do not bring the topic up during an emotional time.
- Have the conversation together as a family.
- Educate yourself by leading by example- having your own Will completed and telling others what you have done is a good way to start.
- Don’t push it, if the family member is not ready to have the conversation, don’t continue, try again at another time.
- Encourage a dialogue – ask the family member for feedback and their thoughts and be open and listen to each other.
Having a conversation with your financial advisors is just as important in your estate planning. Let your financial advisor know that you are interested in discussing options regarding your Will and charitable giving. Financial advisors may be hesitant to bring the subject up so if you start the conversation you can break the ice which will help them assist you with your personal and philanthropic goals.
A final conversation and meeting that you will have is with your lawyer to draft and finalize your Will.
Some questions to think about in preparation of your meeting with your lawyer:
- Who will be your Estate Trustee?
- Who will receive the residue of your estate?
- To what charities would you like to leave a gift?
- Are there personal and sentimental belongings you would like a specific individual to have?
- If you have children, who would you like to be the guardian of them?
- Do you have specific wishes when it comes to burial, cremation, funeral arrangements or celebration of life?
Starting the conversation may be difficult but will give you peace of mind once all is complete.