The Sandwich Generation
For many Americans, the pressures of adjusting to the “new normal” extend far beyond personal responsibility. The term “Sandwich Generation” was coined in the 1980s to describe the growing number of people in their 40s or 50s who are raising young or teenaged children, and at the same time serving as caregivers to their aging parents. Members of the Sandwich Generation are the ones that children and parents rely on to handle all problems, from appointments with the pediatrician to appointments with the Alzheimer’s specialist, from finding a babysitter to finding a certified nursing assistant.
Many of those in the Sandwich Generation work full time or part time jobs, are responsible for maintaining a household, and deal with their caregiving duties on top of everything else. Their to-do lists can be overwhelming, and they do their best to manage it all.
There is one responsibility, though, that many Sandwich Generation members overlook: putting a plan in place to provide for their children and parents if something happened and the one who handles it all isn’t there to handle it anymore.
Too many people have no estate plan at all, and most who do might have a plan that creates a trust for their young children, but says nothing about Mom or Dad. If you are responsible for caring for an aging parent, what would happen to them if you died? If you are providing for them financially, shouldn’t you have an estate plan that makes sure they are comfortable in their old age? If your parent is living with you, shouldn’t you make sure they’d still have a place to live if you weren’t there anymore?
Some parents do have enough financial resources to provide for themselves, but many are living on Social Security and maybe a small pension, and rely on their children to help cover their expenses. If a child dies without a plan to provide for the parent, what happens?
Sandwich Generation members need to make sure that all the things they are doing for their children and their parents could still be done even if they are no longer there.
If you’re looking for an expert in helping you plan and protect your children and your parents, then we invite you to contact our office and schedule an appointment today. We can help develop the right estate plan for you and your needs to make sure you are able to take care of all your loved ones.