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Parent Retirement Assistance

Thanks to your parents you are what you are. If they are in their sixties the time has come to return the favor. You should start discussing and advising them on both financial and medical issues since during retirement they represent a major concern.

As they become older, your parents start to suffer from illnesses and their mental abilities start to fade. As a result they become more vulnerable to financial frauds and misuses. If you start to discuss financial issues with them from an early stage many of the potential problems that may arise will be eradicated before more devastating consequences follow. This can be greatly hampered if your parents have always avoided the discussions on money issues, but you should be insistent enough and show them the necessity of such conversations. Preliminary financial discussions will greatly reduce the possibility of future financial problems, since planning for retirement years is sometimes even more important than the financial years themselves.

How to approach them?

If money has been a taboo topic never discussed with your parents, you should find a way to show them that it is for their good to let you help them now, instead of waiting for a crisis to immerge. If they continue to resist your good intentions, persuade them to reveal the place they file their financial documentation in order to be able to refer to them whenever an emergency situation arises.

You should take care of such documents as living trust and powers of attorney preliminary and not to wait until a situation requiring them arises. You should clearly understand that it is better to become your parents' legal representative before they have become mentally incapable, otherwise you will have to deal with legal guardianship, which will not be a pleasant experience.

Important Details to Know

In order to avoid future complications, you should acquire information about the following in advance:

  • Will availability and its location
  • Living will and medical directives (these are applied in case your parents lose their ability to legally defend themselves due to mental and physical disturbances)
  • Durable power of attorney (this is applied in case your parents need the services of a person for the management of their financial affairs)
  • Social Security Numbers
  • Health records
  • Medicare numbers
  • Insurance policies (health, life, and long-term care)
  • Debts and payments
  • Savings and investments and the corresponding bank account numbers and names of financial institutions
  • Income (retirement plans, social security, annuities, dividends, etc)
  • Location of safe deposit boxes and keys to the boxes
  • Tax returns

Finally, you should compile a list of the names and contact information of doctors, insurance agents, legal advisors, attorneys and so on.

Never ignore the opinions and wishes of your parents if you become responsible for the management of their money. It is their money, so they must have the say on their exact use and allocation. Always ask for their opinion and whenever reasonable implement it. Additionally, don't mix your money with theirs and keep them in touch with whatever new information you have concerning their investments and resources.

You should overcome your inconvenience now in order to avoid future complications both for them and yourself if you are going to take control of their money management.

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