Managing your finances is an important part of caring for yourself—and your aging parents. Although many adult children find it difficult to ask aging parents about their finances, it is important to talk to your parents about the future . The following is a checklist of financial information you should ask your aging parents before it’s too late.
Bank Accounts: Savings
Where are they? Where is the original document? What are the amounts?
- Stocks, bonds, mutual funds
- Real estate
- Other investments
Safety Deposit Box
What type of insurance is it: Medicare, HMO, a pension plan, TRICOR?
Is there a supplemental insurance plan (i.e., Medigap ) that covers the 20% deductible not covered by Medicare ?
Is there a Medicare Part D policy for prescription drugs?
Life Insurance Policy
Long-Term Care Insurance
What does the policy pay for and for how long? How long is the waiting period on the long-term care insurance ? What deficiencies must be present before the policy can be activated (e.g., how many ADLs must the beneficiary need help with)?
Most people who think they have a funeral policy have only purchased a plot.
Find out how: there are laws covering transportation of bodies across state lines.
This should include readings, speakers, hymns and location.
This can be written now. It is much easier now than at the time of death.
|Income||Amount||Mailed or direct deposit|
|Retirement or pension||$___________||____________|
|Mortgage amount||$_____________||Monthly payment||$_____________|
|Car loan amount||$_____________||Monthly payment||$_____________|
|Other monthly payments||$________________________________|
|Financial Plannert||$_____________||Phone #||______________|
After gathering this basic information, use it to determine whether the person has adequate income to cover their expenses for the remainder of their life. Keep in mind that most people do not die suddenly in their home. It is much more common to die after a lengthy illness for which in-home care or care in a long-term care facility is required. Can the person afford this? That can be a difficult question to answer, but assessing your financial picture can be helped by finding a financial planner .
Ask about his or her plan for transportation once driving is no longer possible. This is a given, not a maybe. How does your parent plan to get to the doctor's office, to the pharmacy and grocery? Early planning for transportation needs helps prevent fatal traffic accidents and arguments about giving up the keys.