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Initiating a conversation with an older loved one about finances isn’t easy. Even if it is a discussion between adult children and a parent, asking questions about money can feel like you are invading the senior’s privacy. It may also be difficult on another level: admitting that a loved one is growing old and might need your assistance before long.
While these are difficult conversations to have, they are necessary. Medical emergencies can happen at any age, but they are especially common as loved ones grow older. Sometimes an older family member’s health declines slowly and loved ones can more gradually assume financial tasks. Other times, however, a serious health crisis happens suddenly.
If your senior loved one experiences a health crisis, would you be able to manage their finances for them? Even on a short-term basis?
13 Financial Topics to Discuss with Your Senior Parent
To make it a little easier to tackle this conversation, we created a list of basic financial issues to discuss. You might want to break these questions up over several discussions to make it a little easier on your family member.
While it can be awkward when you first start this conversation, it will become easier as you go. You and your senior loved one will also find that it gives you both peace of mind to know you are prepared in the event of an emergency.
One final suggestion is to take this opportunity to have a conversation with your loved one about identity theft. Our article, “Financial Self-Defense for Seniors,” has tips to help.