Opening the Tough Conversation

older couple smNo, I am not talking about the birds and the bees. It is the conversation about where are your parent’s important papers – wills, life insurance policies, investments, personal advisors and such.

During the holidays, my brother-in-law asked the question during breakfast. His father had died about three years ago; he and his brother thought his dad’s paperwork was in order, until they had to go looking for specific documents.

Much to the surprise of my sister, brother-in-law and myself, our discussion with our parents revealed several items of information about my parent’s financial situation we were previously unaware of.  We found out what financial institutions held their investments and who was the lawyer for their wills, as well as where the hold investment accounts.

When my Grandfather Taylor died, his lawyer had died before him, so the family had to find which law firm had taken over his files.  That was time-consuming and stressful at a time when family members already had much on their minds and hearts.

Some people feel like asking these questions would be prying into their parent’s affairs, but the discussion with my parents showed that it can really help to improve family understanding of the basic financial and legal details they will eventually need to know.

Susan Taylor

Susan Taylor

Resources are important whether you are looking to rent your first apartment, pay your bills, buy your first home or send your child to college. There are many ways to save money to reach your goals, and hopefully ISU Money Tip$ will be one of them. I enjoy traveling, needlework and am a novice gardener.

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