FINANCIAL FRIDAY: Talking To Your Aging Parents About Finances
HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Aging is a part of life. It does not have to be a time of fear and uncertainty, for you or your parents. If you are a caregiver for your parents or other aging relatives, you need to plan ahead and be proactive. Start now having a conversation with your parents about their finances. The information below will get you started.
Patricia Lloyd with Redstone Federal Credit Union says certain things should be discussed.
- Important documents: In addition to a will, make sure your loved one has a power of attorney for both health care and financial affairs. These legal documents will allow an appointed person to make medical or fiscal decisions for a frail or incapacitated relative. Other important documents include an advance directive, living will, birth certificate, marriage certificate, deeds to property, deeds to cemetery plots, military discharge papers, insurance policies, and pension benefits.
- Expenses: Do you know what they owe? Could you pay their bills if you needed to? Be sure to ask these questions, in case your loved one gets to a point where they can’t physically write checks or take care of bills.
- Assets: Are there assets that need to be monitored, such as property, accounts at other financial institutions, or heirlooms? All important topics to bring up in conversation with your family member.
- Insurance: Can you locate important insurance policies? Are you aware of the type of insurance they have and what it will cover?
- Timing and Empathy: Make sure the conversation happens when you aren’t rushed. If other family members need to be involved, set aside a time when everyone is available. Acknowledge your respect for your parents and that this may be a difficult conversation for them to have. Express your desire to help them maintain their independence by planning ahead.
Be sure to tune in at noon every Friday for WAFF 48′s “Financial Friday” segment.
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