Many baby boomers – people born after World War II and before 1965 – are learning first-hand about managing the financial and legal needs of an aging parent, or have experienced the death of a parent and settling their estate. As more baby boomers consider retiring or are managing their retirement, they understand the need to protect their own lifestyle during retirement. Senior adults also want to make their aging process easier on their own children and grandchildren.
Facts About Baby Boomers
• 42% of baby boomers do not have estate-planning documents
• 80% of the United States’ personal net worth belongs to baby boomers
• individuals 50+ demographic are expected to spend to $4.74 trillion over the next 20 years, a 58% increase, according to AARP
Estate Planning is important for baby boomers to plan for their retirement lifestyle, for what will happen to their possessions after they die, and who will make important decisions about their healthcare decisions and long-term care if they become ill and unable to make their own decisions.
1. Secure Your Future First
Parents naturally want to make sure their children are financially protected after they are gone. But baby boomers should first make sure their own finances are secure and will last their lifetime before they give financial gifts to their children. An estate planning attorney can help you create a plan for generational wealth to protect your children’s inheritance – and your retirement lifestyle.
2. Create A Will or Trust
Most baby boomers have money and property that they want to leave to their loved ones and organizations they care about. A traditional will or living will is a comprehensive document to tell your final wishes and how you want your assets distributed. A will should also identify who you want to manage your estate and care for any minor children or dependents. A trust can bypass the costly and time-consuming probate process and make your assets immediately accessible upon your death. A trust can also reduce estate taxes, protect your heirs from creditors, and ensure that assets designated for your dependents are distributed according to your wishes.
3. Talk To Your Family
One of the frustrations of caring for an aging parent is not knowing what their financial and medical wishes are. It’s a difficult conversation for many families, and too often families don’t have the talk. Communicate the contents of your estate plan and final wishes to your family. When a loved one dies, family conflict and stress are too often a result, mainly because the deceased did not let their family know their wishes in advance.
An experienced estate planning attorney can help Baby Boomers manage the legal logistics of estate planning, and provide advice and resources for talking to your family about your medical and financial plans.
If you are a baby boomer who wants to protect your loved ones after you are gone, an experienced estate planning lawyer can advise you on the best options for your situation. To talk to a qualified attorney in Chicago or Lombard, contact the Estate & Probate Legal Group at 630-687-9100.
We serve Cook, Dupage, Kane, Lake, and Will counties.