Finance Quick Answers
My parents are getting older. What questions should I be asking them about their financial affairs/estate?
There is no easy way to ask your elderly parents questions dealing with issues that will need to be settled after their death. Nevertheless, it is still important that you obtain answers to these difficult questions:
Do they have a will? Do they have any hidden assets or liabilities? Where do they keep their financial documents? Who will handle their affairs if they become mentally or physically incapacitated? Do they have a living will and a medical power of attorney? Is their current medical insurance adequate? Do they have long-term-care insurance? Have they made funeral arrangements? Will their estate owe taxes?
Assure your parents that you are not trying to invade
their privacy before asking these questions. Remember,
it is just as difficult for them as it is for you. Also,
after you have asked them these questions, ask them of
yourself as well. Death and disability are not limited
to the elderly.
Source: CFE inTOUCH March 1998, p. 8
Sandra McKinnon, Consumer & Family Economics Specialist, University of Missouri Extension
Cynthia E. Crawford, Ph.D., Consumer & Family Economics Specialist, University of Missouri Extension
Last update: Saturday, July 26, 2008