by Joe Buhrmann, Manager, Planning Support at COUNTRY Financial
Legacy planning can be a touchy subject. No one wants to think about the unthinkable, but having a plan is necessary for protecting your family and your assets.
If you have purchased assets like a car or home or if you have debt, you need a legacy plan. Most won’t secure a will until they get married or have children, but even if you’re young or single it’s still important to have a plan for who will receive your assets and how your debts will be paid.
Start by gathering a full picture of everything you own and everything you owe. Make a list of your assets: car(s), home(s), recreational vehicle(s), etc. List the accounts you have from savings to retirement, and debts you are currently paying like student loans and your monthly bills. Additionally, you should compile a list of your social media accounts and passwords.
Choosing the people in your life who can make important decisions and take responsibility for your family and assets is difficult but necessary to have in writing.
Beneficiaries, powers of attorney and guardians should be reviewed on a regular basis and updated in the event of a major life change such as a marriage, divorce or death.
The right team of professionals can help protect your family and assets when your lifetime is over. Consider talking with the following individuals to make the legacy planning process much easier:
Discuss your plan with trusted family members or friends. At least one person other than your spouse should know where to find these lists and contact information for your “team members,” mentioned above.
Life happens, and circumstances can change from the time you first developed your legacy plan. Regularly review your beneficiaries and make adjustments to your plan when major life changes occur. Annual reviews with your attorney, insurance representative and/or financial professional can help keep your legacy plan current.
COUNTRY Financial® is the marketing name for the COUNTRY Financial family of affiliated companies (collectively, COUNTRY), which include COUNTRY Life Insurance Company®, COUNTRY Mutual Insurance Company®, and their respective subsidiaries, located in Bloomington, Illinois.
“COUNTRY Financial” is the marketing name for the family of affiliated insurance and financial services companies which includes COUNTRY Life Insurance Company®, COUNTRY Mutual Insurance Company®, and their respective subsidiaries, located in Bloomington, Illinois (collectively, “COUNTRY”). COUNTRY Financial and its representatives do not provide tax or legal advice. You should always consult with your tax or legal professional for advice specific to your personal circumstances.