Practical Estate Planning Tips Series 8 of 10

Tip #8:  Get organized. 

Many times I will have clients come in with a stack of envelopes and papers that they got from their retiring attorney.  What a mess, help they say. 

That is why I prefer to put all estate planning documents in a binder that is tabbed out and then to shred all unnecessary documents (such as a power of attorney that was revoked and replaced). 

I then advise my client(s) to make copies of at least the first page of their financial statements, hole punch them, and put them in the back of the binder (I have a tab called location lists in the back). These statements have account numbers and contact information.  They also should stae they are in your trust, if they are.  If not, get them in your trust or be sure the trust is the beneficiary. 

Then every 3 to 5 years, review the binder for accuracy, make changes as needed and replace the statements in the back with new ones.

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