By Marc Empey
Estate planning involves a transfer of wealth in families between generations. This is often a contentious and complicated process because no one relishes speaking of their own death, and how to disseminate their personal property among loved ones. This leads parents to make these decisions without involving their children or heirs so as not to burden them with such a morose topic, but this causes confusion, disputes and litigation against other family members and even personal attorneys.
Communication is Key
When the common conversation process in families breaks down during this trying time, the pain and confusion involved in this time in conjunction with the often surprise involved with heirs when they are not involved in the estate planning process causes these people to act with emotion versus reason and a reasonable conclusion cannot be reached. However, conclusions can be managed by engaging in the mediation process.
The mediation process is designed to help families make these decisions during a person’s life. This process avoids these issues by pre-planning with all interested parties involved. Cogent mediators do not decide for families, but directs them through the more sensitive areas of the process without blinding emotion so that a plan that works for everyone is obtained. In mediation from competent mediation services like those provided by our Coachella Valley estate planning law firm, all parties have input on the outcome.
Additionally, they have a chance to air any ideas or grievances in a conducive forum that gives these parties a voice, and often this process assuages old grievances and breathes new life into family relationships that have suffered from old discrepancies. Ultimately, this produces a more communicative family if not a family that can mire fully enjoy each other while they are living with the security of knowing all details are secure if any unfortunate occurrences are covered with an agreement agreed upon by all involved, and without destructive and expensive litigation.