Estate planning mistakes are made all the time and usually this is because the financial advisor/accountant/attorney has overlooked important issues. We have chosen to highlight five very common mistakes in this blog series. All of these mistakes are easy to avoid, as long as you and your trusted advisors know how to recognize them!
It is important to also consult with an attorney in your State in order to review whether or not these issues pertain to you. In any case, it is recommended to ask your estate planning attorney what the most common mistakes they encounter on a regular basis are, and bring up these issues with them for discussion.
Mistake 4 – Having the wrong beneficiary named on retirement accounts.
It is estimated that over one-third of retirement accounts either have an incorrect beneficiary or do not even show who the beneficiary of the account is! It is critical to make sure that your advisor retains all copies of the beneficiary forms and makes sure that they are, in fact, correct and that the beneficiary is not deceased or the beneficiary is simply the estate. Remember – in the event that no beneficiary is found, the default is usually going to be the estate. This can be unfavorable because the retirement account will not have a designated beneficiary which might create significant income tax problems for the beneficiaries in the future if other estate planning tools are not in place.
This is only one of the various common mistakes. Again, please make sure that you consult a competent estate planning attorney to make sure everything in your estate is in order and fits perfectly with your individual situation!
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