All tagged estate planning

How to Get Your Aging Parents to Talk about and Do Their Estate Planning

As a Gen X kid with Baby Boomer parents, I have found that our generations have very different ideas when it comes to talking about death and money. Boomers often seem averse to discussing these matters, for many reasons. Sometimes they think it’s crass for their kids to be asking them about what they’re “getting.” Sometimes they feel shame about discussing money and death. Sometimes they were just raised to believe that discussion about money and death (like religion and politics) is impolite. Whatever the reasons your aging parents might have for being tough to crack when it comes to these discussions, I have some tips on how to get them to talk and do their estate planning.

Back to School: Emergency Contacts

It’s Back-to-School time, which means that you have to fill out those “emergency contact” forms again. It’s important that you fill them out properly, naming emergency contacts who have the legal authority to care for your kids and who know what the plan is and who they should contact if something happens to you, the parent. I thought I’d put together some tips for parents who are filling out these forms.

The 3 Legal Documents Your College Kid Needs

When your adult (18+) child is going off to college, there are three important legal documents that are important for her/him/them to execute before leaving. (Actually, anyone over age 18 needs these documents.) These documents will allow parents to help their child in the even their child has an emergency or iso other wise incapacitated and unable to manage financial and health decisions. It happens more frequently than you would think. College kids experience mental health issues, get in accidents, and get serious illnesses like meningitis. Having the correct documentation to be able to get information and act on it in vital.

How to name guardians for your kids

A huge percentage of parents who haven’t done their estate planning yet are stuck on who to name as guardians for their kids. Here in Portland, Oregon, so many people have moved here from other places, and so they might not have any family in town, and they might have moved here to get away from a family or cultural dynamic that they don’t want their kids to be a part of. This makes choosing guardians difficult.

How to protect your assets from divorces and creditors: Lessons from 'Big Little Lies'

I have been watching an HBO show called Big Little Lies, which is a fantastic show, but also has some lessons on estate planning. [Spoilers!] In a recent situation this season, a character named Renata (on the left in the photo above) learns that her husband is in trouble for insider trading, and that because of the way they own their assets as a married couple in the state they live in (California), everything they have is at risk and they must declare bankruptcy and sell off everything that the bankruptcy trustee tells them to sell—their home, Renata’s wedding ring, everything. To make matters worse, Renata finds out at the bankruptcy hearing that her husband has been procuring sexual favors from the nanny and promising her additional compensation for her services. This is all a huge blow to Renata, who came from a poor background, worked for everything she built, and is now having everything taken away due to her husband’s actions.