As you go throughout life, you will need to make periodic updates to your estate plan. This not only includes taking the time to review and update your estate planning documents, but it also includes updating your beneficiary designations as well.
Updates should be made to ensure that your assets go to the right people. Take a look at the following information to better understand the need for updates and how to go about updating your wishes.
Do you have any of the following assets?
- Life insurance policies
- Retirement accounts
- Pension plans
- Pay on death accounts
- Transfer on death accounts
Beneficiary Designation Assets
All of the above assets require you to appoint a beneficiary. You can do this with the use of a beneficiary designation form.
Each time you update your estate plan, every three to five years, or upon the occurrence of a significant life event, review your beneficiary designations for each asset as well. If a change needs to be made, do so expeditiously.
Where to Get a New Beneficiary Designation Form so You Can Update
Most beneficiary designations forms are available online from the custodian of your account. The custodian is the investment company such as Vanguard, Fidelity, or ING. If you can’t find the form, call your representative or the main office.
If you have a pay on death account or a transfer on death account, all you need to do is go to your bank and fill out a simple form.
Where to Get Help Updating Your Beneficiary Designations
If you’re looking to update all of your estate plan affairs, don’t forget to make changes to your beneficiary designations. This makes it possible for you to ensure that your assets are given to the right people after your death.
If you have any questions about updating your beneficiary designations, or if you’d like to review or update other estate plan affairs, consult with a qualified estate planning attorney.
The Law Office of Michael Robinson, P.C. is a member of the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys.