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What Have My Parents Got to Do with My Will?

Let’s assume for a moment that you have the perfect estate plan in place ...

  • Your Will creates testamentary trusts for your spouse, children and grandchildren for maximum tax effectiveness and asset protection
  • You have documents that implement a succession plan for your companies, trusts and business partnerships
  • Your life insurance is under control and you know it will benefit your family in the most efficient way
  • You’ve named guardians for your children if they are under 18
  • You’ve even made an Enduring Power of Attorney so that legal, financial, medical and lifestyle decisions can be made for you if you lose capacity.

Whew! You’ve put a lot of thought into these documents. Surely now you can rest easy – you’ve covered all bases and there's not a thing left to do. Right?

Wrong! In some cases, even a carefully tailored estate plan can be thrown into disarray by external factors. An example we commonly encounter is when a client receives a substantial inheritance from their parents.

Estate planning can be a touchy issue. Because it can be awkward to discuss the topics of death and inheritance, many people avoid raising the issue with their parents. But it is important for you and your parents to make sure appropriate plans are made for the future.

If you own a business or work in a profession where asset protection is an issue, it is vital to ensure that your parents' estate plan has taken your circumstances into account. Otherwise, a large part of your parents' hard-earned wealth could potentially disappear into the hands of your creditors. But if your parents undertake some careful estate planning and establish testamentary trusts, these unwanted consequences should be avoided and your parents can make sure that after their death their assets will be protected for the benefit of you and your family.

Even if you are not one of these "at risk" people, it can be a huge benefit to you and a great comfort to your parents if their estate plan has been made with your situation in mind.

Call us if you want to know more. You might also like to ask your parents to arrange an appointment with us!