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Happy gathering, important conversation during Holiday season

Why You Shouldn’t Skip the Most Important Conversation This Holiday Season

A Fleeting Opportunity

You might be wondering, why bring up such a serious topic during the holidays?

When other topics like politics and religion have exhausted themselves (or as a way to escape those topics), talking about preserving the future of the entire family can be a way to get everyone back on the same page.

Why Discussing Estate Planning Matters

You may think that bring up this topic during the holidays is a surefire way to be a Debbie downer.  It doesn’t have to be that way.

When you approach this topic with your parents and grown siblings the right way, it’s an act of love and responsibility.

Talking about the subject in a productive way leads to the following vital benefits for the whole family:

Peace of Mind

Knowing that your family is protected, even in your absence, can provide immense peace of mind. An estate plan ensures that your assets are distributed as you wish and that your loved ones are cared for.

Avoid Family Conflicts

Without a clear estate plan, disputes often arise among family members about how to handle assets.  These disputes can lead to conflicts that strain relationships and to family members not talking to each other for years. Discussing the plan in advance can help prevent such conflicts.

Legal and Financial Security

Estate planning isn’t just about passing on assets; it’s about addressing financial and legal aspects. Who steps up to take charge when a particular family member passes away?  Who reaches out to the court, advisors and other family members?  Getting proactive about planning how to handle these issues can save your family from unnecessary complications and expenses in the future.

Approaching the Conversation:

Bringing up estate planning might seem daunting. Have no fear.  Here are gentle and effective ways to initiate the discussion during your holiday get-together:

1. Choose the Right Time: Pick a moment when everyone is relaxed and open to conversations. After a hearty meal or a quiet evening might be the perfect setting.

2. Share Your Own Experience: You can start by discussing your own estate planning journey. This can make the conversation more relatable and less intimidating. Conversely, you can tell a story of a friend or colleague who got this planning done and the peace of mind they felt checking it off their list.

3. Focus on Looking Out for Their Well-Being: Approach the topic with empathy. Express your concern for their well-being and highlight that it’s about ensuring their wishes are fulfilled.

4. Emphasize Family Unity: Remind your parents or family members that having a clear plan in place is not just about finances but also about keeping the family together and harmonious. Families get into big fights over money, control and inheritances.  The best way to avoid that is to be proactive and address potential issues well beforehand.

Don’t Wait for a Crisis

This holiday season, consider the importance of giving your loved ones the gift of security and peace of mind. Discussing estate planning can strengthen family bonds and protect everyone’s interests.

Don’t wait for a crisis to bring up this important issue. Take the initiative, and you’ll be setting a powerful example for your family, demonstrating your love and care for their future.

If you need expert guidance on estate planning or assistance in starting this conversation, schedule an appointment with us today.  We’re here to help you navigate this important aspect of your family’s future.