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Why are beneficiary designations important in Stuart?

Stuart, FL – When someone creates an estate plan or various other accounts, they need to name beneficiaries who will receive various kinds of assets at a certain time or when an event happens. This process is important to guarantee that parts of an estate will go to the right person. There are also other legal documents that can be used to accomplish similar goals, but they should be created and executed as early as realistically possible. 

Documents that list beneficiaries

There are various types of documentation, such as a payable on death form or beneficiary designation, that will transfer ownership upon a person’s death to the beneficiary. This is helpful because the asset will be transferred without having to go through probate court or any other formalities. Certain bank and retirement accounts, life insurance policies, and investments allow for this kind of formal designation. Formal legal documents like trusts and wills also identify beneficiaries.  

Beneficiaries as part of a full estate plan

Anyone who has various types of accounts and documentation involved in their estate plan should review and update beneficiary information with the help of an attorney. It is important that any beneficiary named in the documentation is both available and willing to accept the responsibilities associated with being identified in the estate plan. These designations may need to be changed if people move, have health issues, or other important life events. 

Alternatives to beneficiary designations

Many families will choose to simply create a will that will name who receives various kinds of property and assets on the testator’s death. This can be convenient in some situations, although a will goes through probate court which can create issues related to taxes and an analysis of the document for legal problems. A living trust is another option that can start to pay out money and assets while the testator is still alive. The person who initially set up the trust may also change terms and beneficiaries as they need to do so. 

As a related matter, someone who is creating documents that have beneficiaries should ensure that they have executed advance directives for health related situations. This can name a person who will make important decisions and have legal authority if the testator become incapacitated due to declining health. The person named can essentially manage the estate in the testator’s place.  

Estate planning attorneys in Florida

The Estate, Trust, and Elder Law Firm handles all estate planning matters for families in the Stuart area. Anyone who is concerned about protecting their property and assets can contact a professional at the firm for more information. 

Firm contact info:

The Estate, Trust, and Elder Law Firm

850 NW Federal Highway, #1004, Stuart, FL 34994

772-261-8556

www.etelf.com

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