Discussing estate plans with children of all ages

Talking about the future after your death is a sensitive topic that you may be reluctant to approach with your children. Whether you have older, adult children, or you have small kids still living in your home, having healthy discussions about estate planning is beneficial. One of the most practical things you can do is to start the conversation early. This will allow you to instill in your kids a healthy view of estate planning at any stage.

One of the most important things to remember is that any discussion you have about estate planning should be age-appropriate and considerate of the other party. However, having an openness about the importance of estate planning can be beneficial for your entire Illinois family. Before you have this conversation, however, you will first want to have a strong estate plan already in place.

Healthy conversations for the entire family

For most families, estate planning and what happens after the passing of a loved one is not a normal subject of conversation at the dinner table. However, age-appropriate conversations can help introduce the estate planning process to kids in a way that is healthy and productive. Consider the following benefits to discussing your estate plan with your kids at different stages of life:

  • It can give younger children a practical view of estate planning and what to include in a plan.
  • Talking about your estate plan allows your children to have an understanding of who you have chosen as the executor of your estate.
  • It can help your kids understand their responsibilities if named as the executor or an agent in a power of attorney.
  • As your children get older, your openness may help them understand their need for a complete estate plan on their own.

It is possible to have healthy conversations about estate planning without burdening your children with something that is not appropriate for their age. Before you have this conversation, however, it is beneficial to ensure that you have age-appropriate plans in place for yourself.

What’s in your estate plan?

There is no one-size-fits-all estate plan. The right terms to include in your plan depend on your long-term goals, your objectives for your personal property in your future and more. An assessment of your current estate and other details of your individual situation can help you understand what options are available to you.


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The Law Office of William C. Wombacher

Local: 309-674-8125
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Commerce Bank Building
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Peoria, IL 61602
NELF | National Elder Law Foundation
CAP | Council of Advanced Practitioners | NAELA | National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc.
Illinois State Bar Association