Should I Share My Estate Plan with Family?

Should I Share My Estate Plan with Family?

Whether you share your estate plan with your family is a personal decision, but there are certain people you should share it with.

Once you have created a will and other important elements of your estate plan, you may start to wonder whether you should share the plan with your family. That decision is a personal one and it is really up to you. Before you share it with anyone, below are some pros and cons about sharing your estate plan, and some advice on whom you should tell about your plan.

Reasons Not to Share Your Estate Plan

How you choose to distribute your estate upon your death is one of the most private and personal choices you will ever make and you really should not feel pressured to share it with anyone. Sharing your estate plan could also lead to problems if the people outlined within it, or left out of it, are not happy with your decision.

It is not uncommon for family members to lobby for changes, particularly when they learn that another relative or someone outside of the family has been designated as executor, power of attorney, or other important position. If you want to avoid this, it is probably best not to share the details of your estate plan.

Additionally, if you have family members who do not want to talk about your final wishes, or what will happen after you are gone, it may be difficult to start the conversation. In this case, it may be best to keep your estate plan to yourself for the time-being.

Reasons to Share Your Estate Plan

Sharing your estate plan with your family can help them plan for their own future, and that of their own family. It can also provide insight if your estate plan does not reflect the wishes of your family. Perhaps you have left your home to one of your children only to learn that they do not want it.

It is important to know that when sharing your estate plan, disputes and arguments may arise. Still, if your family is going to fight before you are gone, they will fight afterward, too. Being present for these arguments can help you all come to a solution together and may even prompt you to make appropriate changes to your plan.

Additionally, we have found when parents do not equally distribute their estate between their children, it can be helpful to inform the children of these decisions. Telling the children who receive less than their siblings often times makes things easier following the death of the parents. Also, indicating in the Last Will and Testament why the parents chose to have an unequal distribution in their Last Will and Testament can also be helpful to ensure the parents’ wishes are carried out.

People You Should Tell

While making the decision to share your estate plan with your entire family is a personal decision you will have to make, there are some people you should absolutely tell. These include anyone you have named as a personal representative, trustee, or power of attorney. These individuals will have to act, and perhaps act quickly, upon your death or if you become incapacitated. For example, if you designated someone as your medical power of attorney, they may have to rush to a medical facility to make medical decisions on your behalf when you cannot.

Call Our Texas Estate Planning Lawyers Today

When you need legal advice about your final wishes, our Brazoria county estate planning lawyers in Lake Jackson at Cordoba Law Firm, PLLC are here to provide it. Call us today at 979-297-2854 or fill out our online form to schedule a consultation and to learn more about how we can help.