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Are You (or Your Loved Ones) Properly Prepared for Death?

Life is full of unexpected turns. One of the worst turns may be when a loved one who is up in age suddenly passes away. While grieving the loss, those closest to the deceased have to pull themselves together and handle the affair of their loved one. Often, the deceased doesn’t have their final affairs in order. You may want to have these conversations with your aging loved ones who are currently still here. Here are some things that you will want to discuss with them:

You will want to find out who will be in charge of your loved one’s affairs when they transition. It is important for that person to be acknowledged before your loved one passes away to prevent any turmoil. Encourage your loved one to establish that person now.

Is there a will in place? If not, encourage your loved one to have a will created and stored safely. A will, according to Investopedia is a legal document that communicates a person’s final wishes pertaining to possessions and dependents. A person’s last will and testament outlines what to do with possessions, whether the deceased will leave them to another person, a group or donate them to charity, and what happens to other things he or she is responsible for, such as custody of dependents, and management of accounts and interests.

Life Insurance
Is there a life insurance policy or policies? Is the policy or policies still in effect? These questions must be asked. If there is a policy (or multiple policies) in place, someone needs to know what companies your loved one is insured by and the policies should be stored somewhere securely where those who will handle the final affairs of this person will have access to.

Ask your loved one to review the beneficiaries of the insurance policy(es) to update the list, if necessary. If there is no active life insurance policy, you should meet with a reputable broker to discuss whether coverage for your loved one is possible.

Assets and Liabilities
If your loved one owns property or other assets, ensure that those items are included in the will. In terms of liabilities, it is advisable that your loved one generates a list of creditors that they currently have along with their contact information. This will make it easier to handle final affairs when the time arises.

Organ Donation
If your loved one wants to donate their organs upon their demise, it is important to discuss that now and take the necessary steps to register as a donor.

I know this post is a little morbid, but it will make the grieving process easier if you have these things in place. You will also want to contact the following upon your loved one’s transition: Medicare, health insurance companies, current employers, their email and social media providers, banks and brokerage firms where they held accounts, etc.

Make sure you begin having these conversations with your loved ones, especially those who are aging.

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About Frederick Towles

Frederick Towles is an entrepreneur, author and professional coach on personal finance, recognizing, seizing and leveraging opportunities of all kinds. Frederick founded The Towles Group Inc. to address issues that relate to small businesses and individuals – accounting, taxation, asset protection, financial compliance, wealth creation, debt management and business management. He also founded Unlimited Expectations Inc. which provides tools for individuals to assist them in the areas of opportunity recognition, leadership and personal finance. Through the tools and services offered by these companies people are positioned to operate their lives and their businesses at optimal capacity.

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