How to Know When It’s Time to Help Elderly Parents Manage Their Money

9:55 pm Asset Protection, Estate Planning

caregiver e1354228604294 How to Know When It’s Time to Help Elderly Parents Manage Their MoneyThose fortunate enough to have parents living to a ripe old age are often faced with the challenge of when to step in with care giving duties.  The time to do so for healthcare reasons will be obvious; what may not be so obvious is when parents need help managing finances.

Here are some tips for making the transition into a financial caregiver:

Know when to initiate a discussion.  The best time to have the discussion about family finances is when your parent(s) are still healthy.  Look for signs they may be having trouble or if they have fallen victim to a financial scam.

Make them comfortable.  Let them know you want to respect their wishes when it comes to getting help so they will feel comfortable when the time comes, and ask them to prepare you by detailing what they have already done when it comes to estate planning.

Build trust.  Ease into financial care giving duties by starting out small.  By having access to their accounts online, you can monitor activity without being intrusive.

Keep siblings in the loop.  Usually, care giving duties will fall to one sibling, but it’s important that all siblings be kept in the loop.  If parents already have a financial advisor, it may be helpful for all siblings to attend annual reviews.

Look for opportunities to protect assets.  Advanced asset protection strategies may need to come into play for those with substantial assets.  These could include parents giving co-ownership of a home to an adult child or establishing trusts to protect assets.

Avoid probate.  Ensuring that retirement accounts have beneficiary designations will help the estate avoid probate.

For more tips on protecting assets, contact our Costa Mesa law firm.

 

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