Transferring of assets after death is the No. 1 reason for family division and members vowing to never speak to the other(s) again.

K-State Research and Extension will host Preserving the Family with Estate Planning workshops set for three locations in northwest Kansas in February.

Attorneys and K-State specialists will cover a range of topics including estate planning basics, trusts and asset protection, long-term care planning, farm succession planning and family communication.

The first workshop will be Feb. 22 in Hill City at the Graham County 4-H Building. The abbreviated evening program will start at 6 p.m. and wrap up at 9 p.m. Cost for the workshop, including supper, will be $10 per person, and $5 for each additional family member. Families must register together to receive the discount. The schedule will be: registration and meal, welcome and introductions, estate planning basics by Anna Schremmer, probate and trusts by Daniel Diederich, farm succession planning by Gregg Hadley, ending with a short wrap up and evaluation.

On Feb. 23, a full-day workshop will be at the Gateway Civic Center in Oberlin. The program will be repeated Feb. 24 in Oakley at the Buffalo Bill Cultural Center. Both days will start at 9 a.m. and end at 4 p.m. The cost for the day-long program will be $20 per person, and $15 for each additional family member. The cost includes lunch and all materials.

The early-bird registration deadline for all three workshops is Feb. 16. Late registration and walk-in fees for full-day workshops are $30 per person; lunch cannot be guaranteed for those who register on site.

The schedule for the full-day workshops will be: registration and refreshments, welcome and introductions, “Motivation and Family Communication,”, first breakout session, lunch, second breakout session, Kansas Ag Mediation Services overview, question-and-answer panel and wrap-up and evaluation.

The “Motivation & Family Communication” session will be presented by Dr. Charlotte Olsen, family studies professor and Extension specialist, KSU. Her work focuses on helping families of all kinds become stronger and more stable in their family lives regardless of their situations.

The question-and-answer session at the conclusion of the workshops will include the attorneys and experts answering participant questions.

Choices for the breakout sessions include:

• Asset protection: Probate and trusts, by Daniel Diederich, attorney at law, Salina. Are you considering what you should include in your estate plan and what methods you should use? A will? A trust? This session will help you understand how probate works, what a trust is, and review methods for protecting your assets.

• Long-term planning: How to prepare for the possibility of long-term care by Randy Clinkscales, attorney at law, Clinkscales Elder Law Practice in Hays. This session will discuss how to protect your assets and pay for long-term care without selling your home or leaving your family without a dime. It also will cover the estate planning documents that are essential to protect yourself and your family.

• Estate planning basics: Wills, power of attorney and health-care agents. Speakers are Anna Schremmer, Phillips Rooks District Extension agent, and Erin Yelland, assistant professor and Extension specialist, KSU. Estate planning can be an intimidating process to begin regardless of how much you know. This session will cover how to get started, basic terms and “to do’s” of estate planning. This presentation also will describe the difference between a will and living trust, living will and durable power of attorney for health care, financial durable power of attorney and financial durable power of attorney with a focus on advance health care planning documents.

• Farm succession planning by Gregg Hadley, assistant director of Extension, agriculture, KSU. Farm succession planning can be a scary topic for some farm and ranch families. This presentation and discussion will help demystify succession planning by discussing critical succession issues and recommending a farm succession process to follow.

More information and registration brochures for the regional estate planning workshops are available at county Extension offices throughout northwest Kansas. For questions, contact the Graham County Extension Office at (785) 421-3411, the Twin Creeks District-Oberlin Office at (785) 475-8121 or the Golden Prairie Extension District-Oakley Office at (785) 671-3245.

To register online or see the brochure for details, go to www.northwest.ksu.edu under Events.

Linda K. Beech is Ellis County

Extension agent for family and consumer sciences.