A recent article posted at IndianaLawyer.com touched on the preservation of large estates and pointed out that the key to successful estate planning is communication. With more than $7.6 trillion waiting to be inherited by baby boomers, estate planning is becoming more important especially since research from the Boston College Center for Retirement reports that 9 out of 10 family fortunes will be gone by the end of their children’s lives.
Polly Dobbs, an attorney specializing in estate planning at Dobbs Legal Group, LLC, agrees that communication is key but finds that many older people are of generations who think talking about money is bad manners.
“I always ask my clients whether their children are emotionally and financially prepared to manage their inheritance,” said Dobbs. “Working through emotionally sensitive issues surrounding family relationships should be the first step of a solid estate plan,” she said. “I’m a fan of throwing all the dirty laundry on the table and sorting out issues directly. This avoids surprises later and helps me draft a comprehensive estate plan.”
Polly believes that sitting down and telling stories about family history and talking about how the business began and how the assets accumulated through the years, is a great first step in educating younger family members. This typically allows for more open discussions about family money and expectations of heirs.
Polly helps her clients efficiently transfer their estate to the next generation in a way that promotes family harmony and addresses their specific goals, while treating family members fairly, not necessarily equally. For assistance with estate planning of a business or farm, consult estate planning attorney Polly Dobbs at Dobbs Legal Group, LLC.