Depending on where you are in life as an adult, it may not be easy to talk with your parents about their estate plans. Having conversations about your parents’ end of life plans may be as awkward and uncomfortable as talking about sex when you were younger. Neither party wants to discuss the gory details, they just want everyone to be alright when something happens.

Despite the difficulties in talking about such a subject, there are ways to approach it. This post will provide a few helpful tips. 

Maintain respect – Despite how old you might be and what you have accomplished in life, your parents may still feel like the people who can tell you what to do, and expect for you not to question their judgment. Suffice it to say, they still want to be respected. So when discussing their estate plan, it is important to keep this in mind.

Don’t be disingenuous –If you approach your parents or elders with a “what’s in it for me?” attitude, you may be seen as being around only to collect when your loved one passes away. So talking about how they want to leave a legacy, or what is on their bucket list may be better in eliciting a helpful response.

Don’t wait for a crisis – A major health crisis is a time to figure out how to maintain a loved one’s health, not to determine what is being left through a parent’s will. In the midst of a health concern, a parent needs love and support, not questions about what is being passed on.

 If you have additional questions about establishing an estate plan for a parent, an experienced attorney can help.