Caring for a sick parent can be challenging and emotional time. It’s not uncommon for adult children to have 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 his passing. This includes how to handle his financial matters.
Seniors Matter’s recent article entitled “How do I handle my father’s financial matters now that he’s in hospice?” says that because of this major task, it is easy to put financial considerations on the back burner. Nonetheless, it is important to address a few key issues with your family.
If a family member is terminally ill or admitted to hospice – and you are able to 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 idea 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 and all 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. This includes a will, powers of attorney, trusts, a healthcare directive and a living will. You will need to find copies.
Caring for a sick parent while also managing their financial affairs can be challenging, but it can make the aftermath easier and less stressful for you and your family. If you are interested in reading more about elder care issues, please visit our previous posts.
Reference: Seniors Matter (Feb. 22, 2022) “How do I handle my father’s financial matters now that he’s in hospice?”