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How can you talk to your adult children about asset division?

You know how you want to divide your assets among your adult children, but you have not yet told your beneficiaries and heirs what they should expect for their inheritance. How do you overcome this obstacle?

Kiplinger provides tips for talking to your kids about money and your estate. Do not let fear keep you from preventing unnecessary heartache and confusion for your loved ones.

Talk sooner rather than later

Aim for talking about your estate and asset division sooner rather than wait until a health emergency befalls you. Think of a major life event that gives you an opening for starting the discussion, such as your birthday or a retirement party.

Face the reality of the inevitable

Understandably, you may not want to talk about your death or money issues. Putting the issue off for several years may make you comfortable, but it could also cost you more than you think. Maybe you do not want your adult children to grow complacent if they learn of their inheritance, but you reserve the right to change how much and what you leave them.

Find a way to break the ice

Because of the heavy emotional weight involved with discussions of death and money, find a way to ease into the conversation. For example, if a relative, friend or associate died recently, use that as an opening to talk about your estate. Rather than focus on what could make your adult children uncomfortable, concentrate on doing yourself a favor by preserving your legacy and wishes.

You could have an easier time talking to your children about your estate than you think. The only way to find out is to make a plan and dive in.