Buttoning Up Your Estate Plan: 5 Questions to Ask – Planned Giving Resources


Buttoning Up Your Estate Plan: 5 Questions to Ask

Is your Will or other estate documents up to date?

It commonly thought best that your will should be reviewed every 3-5 years or whenever a major life event takes place such as a move, sale of a business or remarriage. Make sure everything is up to date and correct, so it accurately represents your current wishes.

How detailed is your Will?

Most wills cover all the large items like your house, car and bank accounts. But don’t forget about the small, sentimental items that can mean so much to family members. Make sure to prevent disharmony within your family by spelling out where you want special items to go, even if these mementos don’t have a high dollar value. Additionally, accounts like IRAs and Life Insurance policies often operate outside of a will and will need special attention to ensure that the beneficiaries are up to date.

Have you made arrangements if you are a caregiver?

It’s prudent to have a detailed plan in place if you are the caregiver of a parent, spouse, child or loved one. It is important to ensure that these persons will be cared for if they were to outlive you. And don’t forget pets; make sure your intentions are known with family members.

Have you planned the details of your funeral?

After a loved one passes funeral planning can be overwhelming when already dealing with grief. Help your loved ones by preparing your final arrangements in advance. You can preplan with a funeral director, or possibly even prepay for services.

Leave specific instructions on your preference for burial, cremation, etc., what things you’d like included in the service (music, scriptures, eulogies, preaching) and if you’d like a charitable donation to go somewhere in lieu of flowers.

Do you have your financial information in order and all in one place?

Your executor will need to know about all recurring payments, monthly bills and utilities, outstanding debts, assets, subscriptions, memberships, and recurring charitable donations. Creating a list that documents this information with account numbers, access codes and passwords along with the charge can be a huge help in organizing your estate.

For help getting organized, download our FREE Family Information Guide here.

Focus on the Family’s experienced Planned Giving team is here to help answer any questions you may have. Contact us here: [email protected]   -or-   800-782-8227

Disclaimer: Focus on the Family does not provide legal, tax, financial or other professional advice. You should consult professional advisors concerning the legal, tax, or financial consequences of your charitable activities