How To Broach A Conversation About Will In A Happy Family
31 Oct, 2022 . 3 min read

How To Broach A Conversation About Will In A Happy Family

It is a matter of fact that Indians do not involve their family members in their family finances till the day they die and it often leads to a lot of confusion and unrest among those who are left behind. If you are reading this and facing the same problem, then you’re not alone.

Certainly, finances and death are two such topics that never get discussed because we can’t figure out the way to broach the conversation. Will is a document that contains the wishes of a person regarding the distribution of his properties and last wishes, after his death. People have always perceived it as a complicated concept but in reality, it's not. Making a Will is a normal thing and many people do it so that their loved ones can lead a peaceful life without any legal disputes. Because succession planning makes everyone’s life very easy this implies that this conversation has to be initiated. But how?

In this blog, you’ll find some ways to broach the conversation with your parents about Wills and estate planning

We understand that many thoughts cross your mind whenever you think about discussing it with your parents who are above 50 years. A few of those thoughts can be:

1. I don’t want to seem greedy

2. I don’t want them to perceive it like I am eager to see them die

Well, these thoughts are natural and this is exactly what you don’t have to sound when you go to them to discuss their succession plan. 

Don’t go like this;

“Hi dad, I want to discuss your retirement finance plans. Have you decided yet, who will get what?”

Never go and talk directly because it is obvious that these kinds of talks are not that easy. The first and foremost rule of initiating this conversation is that do not raise your voice or try to force your opinions on your parents. Talk very politely, calmly and respectfully throughout the conversation. Your gestures matter a lot and can convey the exact opposite of what you want to convey if you lose your calm. Make them feel comfortable and ease them out. Make them feel that it's okay to have this conversation.

Instead, try these methods;

1. Give them a reference

If you have seen any recent incident, maybe with your relatives or in your friend circle whom your parents know, start the discussion with that reference. Talk about the difficulties that person is facing due to a lack of a Will by his parents.

‘’My friend Ashish recently lost his dad and a few days later the conversation regarding his properties was brought up, now he and his siblings are facing a problem in locating their father’s assets and eventually its distribution. It has become an everyday argument between them”

2Give their wishes importance

Don’t directly start asking your parents about their plans, instead ask them about their wishes and make them feel that you respect their wishes.

“We want to get clear on what your wishes are related to your estate. We want to understand that and support you in accomplishing that. One day when you’ll not be here with us, we don’t want to be involved in arguments, fights or legal disputes”

This way your parents will be able to tell you their wishes and the reasons why they are thinking this way.

3. Communicate properly

Whatever you say, think of being in your parents' shoes. Don’t force your opinions on them that this is what you should do or not do. Ask them and then provide them with the solution.

“I know we haven’t discussed finances ever but now your children are grown-ups and it is for everyone's benefit. I don’t want your hard-earned wealth to get wasted. We can discuss this calmly, it doesn’t have to be how they show in their movies or daily soaps.”

4. What if the situation is complicated

If the situation is complicated by which we imply that the assets are jointly owned by parents with someone else or it’s a joint family property, connect them with a legal expert who will resolve all their queries. 

5. Convey your wishes

If you have any specific wishes, convey them too and specify the reason why you want this. Explain your emotions to them, until you’ll tell them, they won’t know.

And the last rule is that if they ask you for some time, give them time. Don’t rush and ask for the answers immediately.

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