The subjects that often arise during discussions of estate planning can make those involved feel uncomfortable; however, frank conversations regarding finances and the death of a loved one can secure any beneficiary’s future and protect the legacy any benefactor intends to leave behind.
Fidelity Investments notes that unless those involved take steps to keep communications clear regarding estate planning, legal conflicts may occur and cause stress for beneficiaries and trustees alike. Taking steps to keep communication open can prevent such issues and encourage the seamless transition of funds.
Preparation makes trustee responsibilities clear
Those involved in estate planning may want to choose a trustee, or the guardian of certain financial accounts, carefully and let these individuals know what their duties are. They must agree to several responsibilities, including:
- Filing taxes for trust accounts
- Account reporting and record keeping
- Distribution of money to beneficiaries
The creator of a trust may want to review these and other duties with any prospective trustee and ensure that the individuals involved agree to take them on.
Increased confidence in times of crisis
A medical emergency, accident or other incidents that render a family member unable to make his or her own choices regarding health care and finances is no time to make important choices about the future, as strong emotions can cloud anyone’s judgment. Having a trust in place that names trustees plainly and outlines a plan of action can offer comfort during these trying times.
Annual meetings with those involved in the planning of an estate can also encourage continued conversations about any updates or changes the plan may require.