Who have you designated as beneficiaries for your insurance policies and retirement accounts? If you can’t remember, it’s worth checking. If you make the wrong decision, it could affect who inherits those assets. Here are some key facts about beneficiary designations.
When you designate a beneficiary for an account, you are naming the person you want to inherit that account. Your designation determines who will inherit the assets in the account, regardless of what your will might say. Generally, the assets will bypass probate and go straight to the person or institution you named. So be sure to keep your beneficiary designations up to date. Simply changing your will won’t change the beneficiaries on your accounts.
There can be tax implications to be aware of as well. With a traditional IRA, your choice of beneficiary can affect how quickly withdrawals must be made and taxes paid. That can change the value of the IRA to your beneficiary.
Review your designations regularly. If you need to make changes, give us a call so we can go over them together. You will then need to send your updated designations to the account trustees. Make sure you receive confirmations and keep copies in your records.