Providing someone with information relating to your most private financial details is not easy. During the estate planning process, however, it is crucial to be fully transparent with your attorney. He needs to know the details relating to your finances in order to create the estate plan that is right for your needs. It is important to find an attorney with whom you feel comfortable sharing this information.
Four Crucial Pieces of Information
When sharing information relating to your financial accounts, be sure to provide your attorney with the following:
- The name of the account holder. Sometimes, the person whose name you think is on the account is not the actual accountholder. The estate planning process is a great time to review and confirm these important details. Your attorney may also suggest some changes in the way that your account is held, such as adding or removing a co-owner, considering “payable on death” accounts, or placing an account in a trust.
- The name of the institution where the account is held. This may seem like an obvious detail, but it is sometimes overlooked. When you pass away, your attorney will better be able to assist your loved ones in administering your estate if he knows where your assets are.
- The account balance. Again, this may seem obvious, but it is a very important piece of information for your attorney to have. Depending on the overall size of your estate, your attorney may advise different types of estate planning tools to help you minimize potential taxes. It is also important for your attorney knows how your assets break down within the overall estate.
- The specific type of account that you have. If the account is an IRA, checking, savings, or money market account, your attorney needs to know this information.
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