Friday, July 25, 2008

Estate Planning As A Gift To Your Children

Thanks, Mom, for painstakingly sorting through your stuff before I have to.  Thanks for having the foresight to give away things while you are present in our lives and can witness how your children and grandchildren use precious family heirlooms.  

I know this process doesn't happen without consequences.  How you want your things distributed might be radically different from the way your offspring thinks (feelings might get hurt; jealousy or envy might surface).  It takes stamina and guts to divide your belongings the way you want and I applaud the manner with which you handled it all with dignity and grace.  

Too often children are left with the enormous job of  cleaning up the home after parents die. Coupled with shock and grief, sons and daughters are saddled with the additional burden of putting financial affairs in order and disposing of real and personal estate. 

Aging parents who clean up their affairs and  who clarify how and where they want their personal items distributed--eliminating some of the emotional toll on their children--epitomize one way to prove their love.  



CathyS said...

My mother in-law and I were not very close. I send thanks on a regular basis that almost everything was gone by the time she died. It only took my husband and I one afternoon to go through her belongings and get them where they needed to be. Thank you Hope.

Milton said...

How fortunate that your mother was willing to take on this difficult and emotional task. This blog may inspire others to do the same.

50something said...

Knowingly or not she made it easy on you. Good for her!

Robert said...

Estate planning isn't what it used to be.

This is a critical area that requires new thinking. There is a $50 trillion (that's a T) wealth transfer beginning. Values are up fro grabs, as is investment value. My suggestion is a good team and some dispassionate thinking about what IS happening, rather that what might happen. I publish a blog about the overlap between historic cities (and the HUGE financial opportunity they represent) and innovative entrepreneurs. Blogs like "Boomers" are a great resource. Nice work! Keep contributing.

50something said...

SOS to the sandwich generation:
You or your parents can add the name of the future recipient to the back of all your heirlooms so that when the time comes, the item will go directly to the person you chose. Thanks, Christine, for the suggestion!