Preparing for the Unexpected: Get Organized!
On a scale of 1 to 10 just how organized are your financial documents? If you’re a little uneasy with your initial response, we encourage you to start 2013 off on a new foot. Take the time to organize the documents your loved ones would need, in event of your death, and put them someplace safe – and dry!
Where to get started?
We understand that it’s tough to wrap your brain around the difficulties your family would face if you were no longer alive or healthy. That’s why we’ve decided to address this in today’s post. A great article published in the Wall Street Journal a few years ago provided an extremely helpful list of the “25 Documents You Need Before You Die.” The well written piece divided the list into 6 major categories: The Essentials, Bank Accounts, Proof of Ownership, Marriage & Divorce, Life Insurance & Retirement and Health Care. Here’s a rundown of the documents in each:
- Your Will
- A Letter of Instruction
- A Completed Durable-Power of Attorney Form
- A List of all Bank Account Numbers
- A List of all Bank Usernames and Passwords
- A List of all Safe Deposit Boxes (be sure and grant your spouse and children access)
Proof of Ownership
- A List of all Land Deeds (including houses, land and cemetery plots)
- A List of all Mortgage Accounts
- Poof of all Loans Made and Debts Owed
- All Vehicle Titles
- Any Partnership and/or Corporate Operating Agreements
- Brokerage Accounts, Savings Bonds and Stock Certificates
- Tax Returns
Marriage & Divorce
- Current Marriage License
- Divorce Papers
Life Insurance & Retirement
- Life Insurance Policy Documents
- Individual Retirement Account Documents
- A List of all 401(k) Accounts
- A List of all Pensions
- A List of all Annuities
- Living Will
- Documentation of all Family and Personal Medial History
- Documentation of a Durable Health-Care Power of Attorney
- Authorization to Release Health Care Information
- Do-Not-Resuscitate Order
Though this is a relatively long list, many of these documents are likely right at your finger tips. What are you waiting for? Begin gathering these documents today. Your family will thank you for it! Once you’ve compiled everything, we encourage you to place all documents in a fire-safe box, in a dry place.
Want more tips to help you start 2013 off on the right foot? Contact us today. Allow one of our highly skilled, licensed agents to help you compare life insurance rates, coverage and more. We also encourage you to follow our Life Insurance Blog, stay up to date on the news and trends that affect your financial health. While you’re here, check out these recent related posts:
Do you feel that your important documents are well organized?