As hard as it is for all of us to plan for our deaths, doing so is one of the best things you can do for your family. Adding to their grief and pain by giving them no clue as to where to find your personal and business paperwork should not be a memory you leave behind. Here’s the last important gift you can give your family:
Gather the following information in a folder and let your family know where they can find it in case you die unexpectedly or have a health crisis:
Advisors – Provide the name and contact information of any financial advisors, including attorneys, estate planners, CPAs, accountants, etc.
Bank Accounts and Safety Deposit Boxes – Bank name and account numbers for each bank where you have an account. Include PIN numbers for online banking. If you have a personal banker, include his or her name as well, with contact information.
If you have a safety deposit box, record the name of the bank, the box number as well as contents of the box and location of the key.
Investment And Retirement Accounts – For investment accounts, provide the name of the brokerage, your personal broker, the location of your statement file, account and PIN numbers.
For retirement accounts, provide contact information for plan administrators as well as account and PIN numbers.
Insurance – For all your policies – health, home, car, life, long-term care – provide the name and contact information for the agents as well as account numbers.
Health care – For your health care providers, give contact information for physicians, Medicare information and any other gap coverage you may have.
House – If you still have a mortgage on your home, provide information on your lender and payment due dates. Also provide the location of deeds and property titles. Include contact information for any home service providers – cleaning help, lawn care, etc.
Credit Cards – Make a photocopy of both sides of each credit card and provide balance and payment information.
Vehicles – Provide information on where titles and registration information are kept. Make a photocopy of your driver’s license as well.
Personal – Include a list of your friends and neighbors with email and phone contact information as well as all your email account log-ins and passwords.
This last bit of planning on your part will go a long way toward helping your family cope in the immediate aftermath of your death or incapacitation.
A Note from the Attorney, Stan Pierchoski:
The practice of law is a second career for me. After obtaining Master of Science degrees in both Nuclear and Mechanical Engineering, I worked in the Nuclear Power Industry for 15 years. Always having an interest in law, I attended and graduated from law school and founded the Pierchoski Law Firm in 2002 in Pulaski, TN. For several years I practiced as a criminal defense, trial attorney. After my parents passed I became interested in Trust and Estate Law and felt a strong calling to change my practice to the Estate Planning area.
For years I have been exclusively doing trust writing and wealth planning and have become proficient at it. Over the last several years my practice has evolved to serve all age groups including elders and Medicaid Planning. I am always open to your questions and am more than happy to chat with you about your concerns so give me a call or stop by my office. You’ll be glad you did!