All your financial information needs to be available for the people who are left behind because they will be grieving; and if they have to play detective to figure out what accounts need to be closed and what assets were left behind — that’s an absolute nightmare.
– Cameron Huddleston
As we age, we may need help managing our finances for a myriad of reasons – including cognitive decline. How to start that conversation with an adult child may be challenging for both parties, but it’s a critical conversation to have to prevent costly errors or even losses along the way.
Ready to tackle the difficult conversations about money with your adult children? This episode of This Is Getting Old: Moving Towards An Age-Friendly World will help smooth out any wrinkles in those talks, thanks to Cameron Huddleston’s sage advice. Get ready for an enlightening chat – and a sigh of relief.
Key points covered in this episode:
✔️ When To Have The Conversation?
Cameron Huddleston, author of “Mom and Dad, We Need to Talk” and award-winning journalist with 20 years of experience writing about personal finance, suggests that the best time to have this financial management conversation is when you are healthy and relatively young.
“Having this conversation in your fifties with your 20-something or early 30-something children is a great idea,” Cameron said.
✔️ What Information To Share?
If you have named one of your children as your Power of Attorney—meaning they have the right to make financial decisions in transactions for you once you’re no longer able to – that person needs to have a good idea about the details of your finances. Your child needs to know the following:
- Where you bank
- Be able to access those bank account(s) to pay the bills.
- How they must pay for care if you need long-term care.
- If there is still a mortgage or other types of debt.
- Your account numbers, usernames, and passwords—they need it all
✔️ Completing the In Case of Emergency Organizer
In Case of Emergency Organizer is a valuable tool that compiles all that information, including Social Security and Medicare numbers, health insurance policy numbers, life insurance, all of your financial accounts, usernames, and passwords.
✔️ Think Of It As A Gift
Think of it as a gift to the people you are leaving behind—to have this information organized so that they don’t have to play detective, and it won’t be even more difficult for them.
✔️ Creating And Coordinating Your Circle
Identify those trusted family members early on. If you don’t have children you trust, identify someone else. Maybe it’s a niece or a nephew, or a family friend. You’ve got to have someone you trust who can be there for you if you need help with finances as you get older.
If you have questions, or comments or need help, please feel free to drop a one-minute audio or video clip and email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I will get back to you by recording an answer to your question.
More Resources About Memory And Alzheimer’s Disease …
This Is Getting Old has several other episodes about memory and Alzheimer’s. You can check them out below:
- EP: 65 – What are the Stages of Alzheimer’s Disease? Part I: Symptoms of Early- and Late-Stage Alzheimer’s Disease
- EP: 66 – What are the Stages of Alzheimer’s Disease? Part II: Symptoms of Late- and End-Stage Alzheimer’s Disease
- EP: 64 – Alzheimer’s Disease and Living Alone: Four Signs Someone May Not Be Safe at Home Alone
- EP: 63 – Alzheimer’s Disease and Driving: Five Signs That It’s Time to Take the Keys
- EP 38: Ten Tips for Preventing Alzheimer’s Disease
I earned my Bachelor of Science in Nursing (‘96) and Master of Science in Nursing (‘00) as a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) from the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW) School of Nursing (SON). I truly enjoy working with the complex medical needs of older adults. I worked full-time for five years as FNP in geriatric primary care across many long-term care settings (skilled nursing homes, assisted living, home and office visits) then transitioned into academic nursing in 2005, joining the faculty at UNCW SON as a lecturer.
I obtained my PhD in Nursing and a post-Master’s Certificate in Nursing Education from the Medical University of South Carolina College of Nursing (2011) ) and then joined the faculty at Duke University School of Nursing as an Assistant Professor. My family moved to northern Virginia in 2015 and led to me joining the faculty at George Washington University (GW) School of Nursing in 2018 as a (tenured) Associate Professor where I am also the Director of the GW Center for Aging, Health and Humanities.
Find out more about her work HERE.