Despite this knowledge of death's inevitability, Americans are often extremely uneasy about talking to their family members about what will happen when they grow old, get sick and pass away as Financial Advisor discusses in "Everybody Dies. It's Time To Have The Talk."
This reluctance to talk with family members about our own deaths can have consequences. Studies have shown that parents and their adult children often have very different expectations about what will happen when the parents grow old and eventually pass away.
Parents and their adult children often do not have the same expectations about whether the children will have to take care of the parents in their elderly years. They differ on whether the parents will be financially dependent on the children. They also tend to have very different expectations about what type of inheritances the children will receive from the parents and even if they will receive one at all.
These different expectations can all be sources of conflict between parents and their adult children in the future. These conflicts are completely unnecessary and can usually be avoided if parents will come to terms with the inevitability of their own demises and talk with their adult children about what to expect.
A qualified estate planning attorney can help guide the communication and help avoid misunderstandings.
Reference: Financial Advisor (June 28, 2016) "Everybody Dies. It's Time To Have The Talk."