Should you tell your family about your will?

On Behalf of | Jan 4, 2021 | Estate Planning

As a Washington resident, you have invested time and effort into your estate during your life. You have spent time crafting a good estate plan that will ensure proper handling of your estate after your death. 

But what about your living relatives? Should you talk to them about your will and estate plan before your death? Though the topic is difficult to broach, experts suggest you should. 

Why should you discuss your will?

Market Watch examines how and why to discuss your will with your family. First, discussing your will lets you accomplish several things at once. It lets you clear up any potential misunderstandings and explain your reasoning behind certain choices. This can help eliminate potential inter-family squabbles that might have otherwise occurred. 

It also eliminates the element of surprise. Grief experts state that even good surprises can overwhelm and upset a grieving person. This way, everyone knows what to expect. They know how you intend to divide your estate and assets. They know who will get what. 

It gives you the chance to brainstorm with your loved ones, too. Adult children and other beneficiaries can provide valuable input on your will that you may not have thought of on your own. After you discuss things with them, ask for their opinion and open it up for discussion. 

How do you start the conversation?

So how do you broach the topic, then? Experts suggest breaking the conversation down into several discussions instead of trying to tackle it all in one go. You should discuss everything thoroughly, from what is in your will to your end-of-life choices. Give your loved ones plenty of advanced notice, too. Above all, explain why this is important to you and why you want them to listen, even if it is an uncomfortable conversation.