Death can be difficult and nobody wants to think about it, but it’s also part of life.
We don’t mean to be downers, but we have seen many people not plan at all for the unexpected or inevitable. For example, when the deceased leaves a list of beneficiaries that is not up-to-date, families can be caught off guard. Sometimes the information left in a will differs from the life insurance policy, which can also lead to disputes.
While situations like these might put extra grief and stress on families, they’re completely avoidable. As long as you plan ahead, you can prevent family fights over your assets.
Why You Should Choose A Beneficiary
Proceeds from insurance policies, pension plans, and retirement accounts can go directly to your beneficiaries and bypass probate. When you don’t specify a beneficiary—or more than one, which is perfectly possible—your money goes to the estate, which causes a couple of issues.
First, it takes more time for your family to gain access to your assets. In some cases, more than a year. If you have someone who depends on you financially, this person will likely have a hard time.
Second, once your money is transferred to the estate because you didn’t choose a beneficiary, creditors can claim it. For example, if you owe money to anyone, these people are entitled to payment from your funds. On the other hand, your beneficiaries are not responsible for paying your debts. Tips For A Choosing A Beneficiary
- Always have a primary beneficiary and a secondary/contingent beneficiary.
- Opt for revocable beneficiaries, so you can replace them without their consent (E.g: An ex-husband or ex-wife).
- Designate the percentages your beneficiaries will receive instead of specific amounts.
- Keep your list of beneficiaries updated.
- Get the advice of an attorney if you intend to name a minor as a beneficiary.
- Keep in mind that beneficiary designations can override your will.
Don’t let your family fight over your assets! At Serra Benefits & Insurance Services, we offer many types of life insurance and we can answer your questions and concerns regarding beneficiaries. Our experienced team is prepared to assist you with your needs! Contact us through our website or call (760) 439-9700 to get started.