It’s not uncommon for adult children to face a parent’s decline and a stay in hospice at the end of their life. The children are tasked with trying to prepare for the parent’s passing. This preparation includes how to handle his financial matters. Caring for a dying parent’s affairs can be challenging and emotional.
Seniors Matter’s recent article entitled “How do I handle my father’s financial matters now that he’s in hospice?” says that caring for a sick family member is a challenging and emotional time. Because of this significant task, it is easy to put financial considerations on the back burner. Nonetheless, it is vital to address a few key issues.
If a family member is terminally ill or admitted to hospice – and you can do so – it may be a good idea to start by helping to take inventory of your family member’s assets and liabilities. A clear picture of where their assets are and what they have is a great starting point to help you prepare and be in a better position to manage the estate.
An inventory may include any of the following:
- Real estate
- Bank accounts
- Cars, boats, and other vehicles
- Stocks and bonds
- Life insurance
- Retirement plans (such as a 401(k), a traditional IRA, a Roth IRA, and a SEP IRA);
- Wages and other income
- Business interests
- Intellectual property; and
- Any debts, liabilities, and judgments.
Next, find out what, if any, estate planning documents may be in place. These documents include a will, powers of attorney, trusts, a healthcare directive, and a living will. You will need to find copies.
This search is hard to do while a loved one is dying, but it can make the aftermath easier and less stressful.
Reference: Seniors Matter (Feb. 22, 2022) “How do I handle my father’s financial matters now that he’s in hospice?”