You might be wondering why I am talking about death on a site whose target audience is 20-somethings. Unfortunately, we cannot choose when we will pass and though the odds are in your favor to live a long life, there are outliers and some people do pass away sooner rather than later. As a result, it is important that you take the time to make sure you have the important documents in your life lined up. Here are a few things to think about having.
While you might not have a ton of assets to your name, chances are you have some assets. Without a will, the court in your state decides who gets your possessions. In some cases, this is fine, but when you have certain things that you want certain people to have, having the courts decide is not the best option.
Therefore, it is important that you have a will drafted. Since your life isn’t very complex a will should only run your around $100. Just make sure you have a list of who gets what when you go so you are not in the office all day long.
Additionally, a will tells your family what to do with your remains. This is just as important as deciding who gets what. This is because a death is a stressful time and you don’t want to add to the stress by having your loved ones decide what to do with your body. Save them the heartache and instruct them in your will.
A List of Accounts
No one knows your finances like you know them. If you pass away tomorrow, will anyone know about the savings account you have at the online bank? What about the old investment account you have? Odds are they will have no clue. Make things easy on them by making a list.
Your list should have all of your financial accounts, the account number, login information and a phone number. Of course, you don’t want to keep this list out in the open, so find a good place for it. To let others know about it, you can either tell a family member to check the file drawer in the event you pass or a better option is to make note of its location in your will. This way, it will not be overlooked.
When you open up some accounts, like your retirement account, you are instructed to list a beneficiary. This is the person who will get your retirement account when you die. It’s important to complete these documents and to make sure they are up to date (as life changes, so do the people we want to be the beneficiary).
Now you may be wondering why you need to do this in addition to having a will. The simple reason is it is one less thing to think about when you are completing your will. Your will won’t list every last thing, so having the beneficiary forms in place allows for you to specifically give to certain people without having to include it in the will itself.
Again, odds are you are going to live a long, healthy life. But, you will pass away at some point, so it’s better to have this information completed and ready because we never know when our time will come. At the very least, make sure you do these things for your loved ones. Anything that takes the pressure of decision making out of their hands will be welcomed.