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Tips on Helping Aging Parents with Their Finances

Most of us with elderly parents will be able to tell when it’s time to step in and help when our parents are no longer able to manage their health. Unfortunately, the same cannot always be said when it’s time to step in and help them manage their wealth.

As we age, our financial acuity tends to decline. This decline is usually slow, so it’s difficult to know exactly when parents may need help with their finances. Here are some tips on how to help:

Begin the conversation. There are a couple of ways to start a conversation with elderly parents about their finances. If you’ve started your own estate or retirement planning, this provides a perfect excuse to discuss your parents’ plans with them. Another way is to ask your parents directly about their estate plan, making sure they have the proper core documents -- a will, powers of attorney, advance medical directives -- in place and where to find them

Determine when to step in. If you see unpaid bills piling up or a lot of unopened mail, this could be a signal that it’s time to step in. If you have not been involved in your parents’ finances, begin the process by reviewing their bank, credit card, and retirement account statements for the last six months to get a good idea of their income and assets. If your parents have several different accounts, consolidate them for easier oversight. Set up automatic bill payment for monthly bills. Keep good financial records for income tax purposes.

Get help. You will likely need a team to help you manage your parents’ financial affairs. Ask your parents if they are willing to sit down with their financial adviser with you there to go over their investments. Make sure you know their estate planning attorney and bank representatives who help manage their finances. Enroll them in a monitoring service like EverSafe, which scans all their accounts and reports any behavior outside the norm. If handling their finances proves to be too burdensome for you, consider hiring a daily money manager who will act as a financial assistant for your parents to keep them on track.

The Dorcey Law Firm, PLC, provides estate planning services to Florida residents. Contact our Fort Myers law firm for your free consultation.

Categories: Asset Protection, Elder Law
dorcey law firm
The Dorcey Law Firm, PLC - Fort Myers Attorney
Located at 10181 Six Mile Cypress Pkwy, Suite C, Fort Myers, FL 33966
Phone: (239) 330-6674
Local Phone: (239) 418-0169