You spend a lifetime focused on accumulating wealth to provide for a secure retirement, only to be confronted with several obstacles when it’s time to pass it on to your surviving family members. Estate settlement costs, complex estate laws, and complicated family or business issues can create significant financial hardships for surviving family members without the proper planning in place.
By taking the time to lay a solid foundation for the financial future of your surviving family members, you can save them much time, money, and grief. A well-conceived financial plan for survivors will:
- Establish clearly defined goals and instructions for the transfer of assets
- Optimize the use of trusts and legal protections such as powers of attorney and medical directives
- Ensure the beneficiary designations of your life insurance, qualified plans, and annuities are properly aligned with your estate and financial plan
- Ensure your assets are properly titled, consistent with your estate plan
- Establish contingency plans for family members with special needs
- Remove your estate assets from onerous and costly probate proceedings
- Minimize estate taxes
To alleviate potential hardships and minimize surprises, we encourage you to conduct a thorough survivor analysis to evaluate how surviving family members will be able to cope with a changed financial landscape while providing a roadmap for their financial future.
Like many clients before you, going through the process of completing our Post-Mortem Survivor Financial Decisions Checklist will provide you with much greater certainty and peace-of-mind regarding the financial future of your survivors.