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  • Nicole J. Zuvich

How much do your adult kids need to know about your estate plan?

Updated: Sep 27

If you have adult children, you may have experienced some role reversals in the past few years. While you certainly appreciate your kids’ input, you have decades of life experience. Put simply, regardless of what your adult children believe, you are perfectly capable of handling your estate plan and many other matters.

According to Psychology Today, some parent-child role reversal is inevitable for most individuals as they age. If you do not want your kids to take control of your estate plan, you may wonder exactly how much they need to know about it.

Your finances

Even under ideal circumstances, discussing finances is tough for many. If you would prefer your adult kids not to know about your financial situation, you probably want to talk about your estate plan in general terms.

For example, you may want to tell each child he or she is receiving a certain percentage of your assets. It is perfectly acceptable to end the discussion there.

Your health care

Comprehensive estate plans generally include advance directives. Because your adult kids are likely to want to have some say in your end-of-life care, you probably want to share your wishes with them. This is particularly true if you choose to ask one of your children to be your health care surrogate.

Your family dynamics

Every family is a bit different. If your family dynamics indicate you may have a difficult time talking about estate planning matters, it may be beneficial to ask a family counselor or even your attorney for some input.

Ultimately, though, how much you tell your kids about your estate plan may depend on how you believe they will react to it.

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