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Estate planning information should be shared to be effective

Some families are very close-knit and communicate regularly on issues both great and small. Other families may be less communicative and keep important information to themselves. There is one area in which open communication can greatly benefit families in Massachusetts. Sharing estate planning information with loved ones may be a sensitive topic but it can save a tremendous amount of heartache at a future date.

Having a well-crafted and comprehensive estate plan may not be effective if people are unaware of its existence. It may not be necessary to share all the details but there are critical pieces of information that should be shared if a person wants his or her final wishes to be successfully carried out. Chief among these may be the location of important documents. This is particularly true for the person who is designated as executor of an estate. It may also be important to verify that one's chosen executor is comfortable with that role.

In addition to where documents are located, it can also be a good idea to share the nature of the documents and the key details included in them. This can include a living will that indicates a person's wishes regarding medical care should the person be physically or mentally unable to communicate one's wishes. Bank account information, investment account information, usernames and passwords should also be readily available to the executor to enable ease of access to those accounts. A person's social media account information should be included here as well.

Planning for one's death may not be a pleasant endeavor but having a solid plan in place and communicating that plan to loved ones can provide peace of mind. A person in Massachusetts who may be unsure where to begin may wish to consult with an estate planning professional. A knowledgeable lawyer can review one's situation and make recommendations that can help ensure that one's final wishes will be successfully carried out.

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