Estate Plan Review Checklist

Estate Plan Review Checklist | Staying Financially Healthy | Reverse Your Thinking® Estate law, last will and testament in a court.
Estate Plan Review Checklist | Staying Financially Healthy | Reverse Your Thinking®

Estate and end-of-life preparation are two topics that frequently make individuals nervous. Many people seem uncomfortable or anxious while discussing such things, or appear too big and hard to consider. This does not have to be the case. Use this estate plan review checklist for a starting point. This list is not all-inclusive, but it is a good start.

Here are a few ideas to help you cope with the anxiety of estate and end-of-life planning:
  • Create or update a list of all assets you and/or your spouse own. This includes description, how title is held, location, and value.
    • If you have a trust, ensure the transfer of all assets are correctly showing in the exact name of your trust’s name.
  • Create and maintain a complete list of all your usernames and passwords for digital accounts. Close down any accounts that are no longer in use.
  • Review beneficiary designations on all assets.
    • bank accounts, insurance policies, retirement plans, etc.
    • Make sure you have a copy of the most recent form.
    • Determine whether you want the trust or an individual listed.
    • Be sure to list alternate beneficiaries so the asset does not go to your estate and possibly cause probate.
  • Make sure you have a copy of the most recent deed to your house and any other property you own.
    • If you have a trust, make sure that these properties are in your trust.
      • Note that real estate properties held in corporations, LLC, and/or
        partnerships should not be in your trust, but your interest in that entity should be in that trust.
  • Review all estate plan documents, including your Will, Advance Health Care Directive, Durable Power of Attorney, and Trust.
    • Determine whether you need to change beneficiaries, agents, successor trustees, custodians for minor children, and nomination of conservator of your estate or person if that should become necessary because of death, incapacity, age, marriage, or change in your relationship with that individual.
    • Additionally, review how your estate distribution plan lays out upon your death to ensure it is still appropriate.
    • Always consult your attorney regarding previous documents before shredding them.
  • Call your Estate Planning Attorney if they have not reviewed your documents in the last few years.
    • Discuss the need to revise your documents due to changes in the law.
      • For example, many older trusts that provide for the trust to be split into a survivor’s trust and a bypass trust may no longer be a suitable plan for many couples today.
Haven’t Started Yet?

If you don’t have a Will, Durable Power of Attorney, Advance Health Care Directive, and possibly a Trust you may want to call an Estate Planning Attorney to discuss the need for you to have such documents.

We welcome you to call us if you need a referral to a trusted advisor for these matters.

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