Cross Estate Planning Off Your To-Do List
A new year will offer a fresh start on your personal goals and resolutions. It’s also the perfect time to take stock of where you’re at in your estate planning.
When surveying your plan, make sure you review the following:
- Wills and trusts. Review your will or trust for any life change such as a birth, death, marriage or a move to a different state.
- Beneficiary designations. Remove any beneficiary on your life insurance or retirement plans who is deceased or is a former spouse, and consider adding a charitable organization like Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
- Durable power of attorney. Make sure your durable powers of attorney for financial matters and health care are current. A copy of the financial power of attorney should be given to your family members, while a copy of your health care power of attorney should be provided to both family members and health care providers.
- Safe-deposit box. Catalog the contents of your safe-deposit box. Give a written copy to a trusted family member and note any items you are holding for someone else.
- Bank or brokerage accounts. Name designated heirs or Rensselaer as recipients of bank or brokerage account proceeds at your death.*
- Charitable contributions. If you’ve included a gift to Rensselaer in your estate plan, review the details of your gift and let us—and your loved ones—know of your intentions. This will guarantee that your wishes are carried out after your lifetime.
*State laws govern payable-on-death accounts and transfer-on-death accounts. Please consult with your bank representative or investment advisor if you are considering these gifts.
If you have questions about your estate plan or how you can support Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute with a tax-wise gift this year or through your estate, please contact Art Tracy '92 MS at 518-276-2561 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We are happy to help.