DRESNER FINANCIAL PLANNING
Financial Advisor to clergy and religious educators 

Estate Planning

Getting Your Estate in Order
One of the best gifts you can leave your survivors is an organized estate. Doing so will ensure that your wishes will be carried out and also help your loved ones. Discuss all of this with your family and your will's executor. Definitely consult with your legal, financial and tax advisers.

  • Make sure all of your estate documents and insurance policies are up to date (beneficiaries, etc.), and that your accounts and insurance policies still conform to your estate planning desires.
  • Review retirement plan beneficiary arrangements.
  • Calculate your net worth. Work with your financial advisor to determine what you can do to minimize or eliminate the impact of federal and state estate taxes.
  • Establish a trust if appropriate.
  • Consider funeral preplanning.
  • Organize your financial records including computer passwords, where diskettes are stored, location of tax records, loan payments (credit cards, mortgages, consumer loans, auto and personal loans).
  • Keep your list of financial accounts up to date (account numbers, investments, beneficiaries, insurance policies).
  • List the location of valuable documents (deeds, car titles, military records, birth & marriage certificates).
  • List your personal data. (s.s. number, driver's license number, VA claim number, date of birth, names and contact information of family members.)
  • Arrange for access to your safe-deposit box.
  • List other income sources and government benefits (pensions, Social Security, military benefits, etc.).
  • List all organizations in which you have membership that may provide benefits to your survivors.
  • Provide a family member with the location of confidential or valuable items, the location of spare keys, passwords, etc.
  • Write your personal legacy statement.

Your Personal Legacy Statement
A personal legacy statement is not legally binding, but it provides you the opportunity to tell your own personal story to your children (typically the beneficiaries of your estate). In it you can explain the dreams and goals for your family's future; the causes and concerns that you're passionate about. It's a way for your family to understand you. Some people might use it to explain their family history, others use it as an ethical will - it explains your personal story, your dreams, goals, successes and failures. Maybe it touches on "if I had it to do all over again, would I have made the same choices?" You might choose to include hopes and dreams for future generations; not to dictate, but rather to offer the moral and ethical choices you hope your heirs will follow.

A personal legacy statement can be written (or videotaped) as a personal statement to each child about themselves, their history and how special and unique each child is. It can offer the possibility to heal old wounds and resolve old conflicts. In all these examples, a common thread is that it's a very personal statement about deeply meaningful issues. Sometimes the work of putting together a financial plan is the impetus for wanting to create it. And it's something your heirs would cherish beyond the mere financial bequeaths.

 

 




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Are you saving enough for retirement? If not, do you know what to do to reach your goal? Are you taking on more investment risk than necessary? Is your greatest financial asset (not your home) properly insured? Are you satisfied with the value, service and attention that you're receiving from your advisor? If not, call for a complimentary review of your financial situation.

Dresner Financial Planning Dresner@clergyplanning.com
2359 Salisbury Road Westbury, NY 11590
(888) 200-9670
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