Approaching your children about your will

On Behalf of | Sep 13, 2023 | Estate Planning

Discussing your will with your children is a significant and potentially delicate matter. You should do so with a level of care and thoughtfulness.

Remember that how your family interacts will influence your approach to this discussion. You can rely on these steps to guide you through this difficult conversation.

Think about your child’s age

The way you handle this conversation can differ based on your children’s age and level of maturity. Younger children might not fully understand what a will is, so you can introduce them to the idea without delving into the details.

You have the option to include your grown-up children in the process of crafting and carrying out your will. They can provide valuable insights and suggestions.

Share your wishes

Explain how you plan to distribute your assets and any specific reasons behind your decisions. If there are unequal distributions, prepare to explain your reasoning and keep the conversation focused on your wishes and not on their potential inheritances.

Address their concerns

Promote an environment where your children feel comfortable asking questions and voicing any concerns. Discussing your will may make them uncomfortable, angry or agitated; be sure to remain calm and continue the discussion in a productive way.

Discuss their roles

If relevant, discuss who you have selected as the person responsible for executing your will and any plans you have made regarding who will take care of your underage children.

According to a Gallup Poll in 2020, only 45% of all Americans have a will. Talk about the will with your children if you are among the 45%. If you are not, you should discuss creating one with your family. It is an important way to ensure everyone understands and respects your wishes.