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Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time

Disappearing Miles and Points. Can you transfer to your heirs?

By | Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time, Uncategorized | No Comments

Congratulations! You have just accumulated a great number of reward points with your holiday shopping, and your two recent airplane trips. Now what would happen to your frequent flier miles and credit card points should your demise occur? The answer depends upon which airline you have chosen, and which credit card you are using. They all have different policies.

 

The Points Guy helps to understand the different situations. Delta states that you can no longer transfer Sky Miles after one's passing. Delta deems that the miles are "not the property of any member, and thus may not be sold, attached, seized, levied upon, pledged, or transferred under any circumstances, including by operation of law upon death, or in connection with any domestic relations dispute and/or legal proceeding."

American Express Membership Rewards may be reinstated to a new basic account or be redeemed by the estate of the deceased Card Member. There are certain formalities that must be complied with. Be sure to contact the Member's Reward Division of American Express should a death occur. Chase allows an account to be taken over by a joint card member or an authorized user.  Points remain for usage if the account is taken over.

American Airlines for the most part says that mileage credit is not transferable, and may not be combined among members, their estates, successors, and assigns. United makes it impossible to transfer miles upon death, and  Southwest is also a definite no on transfer of miles. However, these airlines will not close an account, so if you have the deceased's membership information, you could use those points to book travel for anyone before those points expire (two years after demise).

British Airways outlines its policy, and essentially does not allow transfers, but there may be ways of using the points by following their procedures.

Hotel policies are pretty similar in terms of using points upon a death. Hilton states they cannot be transferred, and the Hyatt and Marriott follow the same rules The key to all of this is reading the various policies of the credit card companies, or airlines and  hotels. There may be ways for deceased members' families to use the points, provided you do not close the account prior to the usage upon a demise occurring.

 

It is important that you check with your credit card, airline, or other “point” program to know what happens to yours.  For those that allow to be passed on, charities like Make-A-Wish can use these unused miles to coordinate travel for their Wish-kids.

Details! Details! Be sure you take the time to understand your cardholder policies before you start earning.

About Morris Hall, PLLC:
At Morris Hall, PLLC we have focused our legal practice on estate planning for over 45 years.  Along with estate planning, our attorneys help clients and their families with matters of probate, trust administration, wills, power of attorneys, business planning, succession planning, legacy planning, charitable gifting and other important legal aspects.  We also have divisions in financial, real estate and accounting to help you incorporate all of your planning together, ensuring that everything works perfectly for your needs and situation. Our Arizona offices are located in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Carefree, Tucson, Oro Valley, Prescott, Sedona, Flagstaff and Arrowhead.  Our New Mexico offices are located in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

Planning is for Everyone

By | Estate Planning, Financial Planning, Other, Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time, Will | No Comments

I have talked before about everyone having an estate.  This just means we all have something.  And once we know that we have something, then the next logical thought is that we all have something to plan for.

And you may be saying that you have your plan in place.  So I will say “Kudos!” You are better than 70% of Americans.

But what about your parents?  What about your adult children (keep in mind that “adult” is 18 years and older)?  Have you talked to them about getting their plan in place?  What about your friends and neighbors?  Don’t you want to share the relief and peace of mind you have by getting your estate properly planned?

And I know that estate planning (i.e. death and taxes) is not an easy subject.  “So, have you given any thought to dying, and the impact it will have on your loved ones?”  That sentence just does not roll off of your tongue.

But remember, everyone has an estate, so you don’t have to get into any details.  You can simply talk about how good you feel but talking with your Morris Hall attorney and getting your affairs in order.  You just need to open the door with those positive feelings.

 

Planning is for everyone.  The plan content differs by the needs and goals of the individual.  As you know, the first step is meeting with one of our attorneys.  We can’t call your parents, or your kids.  We can’t call your friends and neighbors.  But you can have them call us, and they can have what you have – a great estate plan and peace of mind.

jim-plitzContributed by Morris Hall, PLLC Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Las Cruces Estate Planning Attorney and Partner, James P. Plitz.

About Morris Hall, PLLC:
At Morris Hall, PLLC we have focused our legal practice on estate planning for over 45 years.  Along with estate planning, our attorneys help clients and their families with matters of probate, trust administration, wills, power of attorneys, business planning, succession planning, legacy planning, charitable gifting and other important legal aspects.  We also have divisions in financial, real estate and accounting to help you incorporate all of your planning together, ensuring that everything works perfectly for your needs and situation. Our Arizona offices are located in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Carefree, Tucson, Oro Valley, Prescott, Flagstaff and Arrowhead.  Our New Mexico offices are located in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

 

Take Control – Make a Plan

By | Estate Planning, Other, Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time, Preparedness | No Comments

The biggest issue that I hear about “why” people don’t but their estate plan in place is that they don’t want to have face death.  The fear is that by talking about it, it will happen.  Our mortality is a humbling proposition, but talking about it, or avoiding it, does not change our ultimate outcome (or timing thereof).

But it does not have to be viewed in such a negative lens.  Though estate planning has a component dealing with death, it is more about taking control while you are alive.  Estate planning is about getting your thoughts, your hopes, your intent onto paper so that your loved ones have an easier go at this emotional time.

Estate planning is not a sterile, cold draining experience.  It is full of life.  It is securing your present so that you can better enjoy your future.  Estate planning is a couple of steps now, to save thousands of steps later.

And when estate planning is done properly, you will have the peace of mind that you deserve.  The peace of mind that allows you to rest assured that when the time comes, your loved ones will be able to work through the estate as easily as possible.

Take control of your life and of your plan.  Come in and talk with one of our estate planning attorneys to get your plan in place.  That conversation will lead you to a much better state of mind.

jim-plitzContributed by Morris Hall, PLLC Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Las Cruces Estate Planning Attorney and Partner, James P. Plitz.

About Morris Hall, PLLC:
At Morris Hall, PLLC we have focused our legal practice on estate planning for over 45 years.  Along with estate planning, our attorneys help clients and their families with matters of probate, trust administration, wills, power of attorneys, business planning, succession planning, legacy planning, charitable gifting and other important legal aspects.  We also have divisions in financial, real estate and accounting to help you incorporate all of your planning together, ensuring that everything works perfectly for your needs and situation. Our Arizona offices are located in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Carefree, Tucson, Oro Valley, Prescott, Flagstaff and Arrowhead.  Our New Mexico offices are located in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

 

What Happens to your On-Line Presence when you Die

By | E-Alert, Estate Planning, Other, Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time | No Comments

My great aunt Barbara is now on FaceBook!  She is the sweetest, nicest and best person you can ever hope to have a part of your life, but never in a million years would I have expected a “Friend” request from her.  Just about all of us are on-line in some way or another.  From printing your photos at Walgreens, or storing your frequent flyer miles, to all the social media sites to your basic e-mail account.  Our on-line portfolios are growing each and every day.

But what happens if you are not there to deal with your on-line presence? Who can fill your shoes, so to speak?

In many instances, getting access to these “digital assets” is critical from an information standpoint – there could be the e-mail that can show where the life insurance policies are stored.  It is also critical from an emotional standpoint – there are so many pictures, movies and other media that helps tell the story of “you”.

But access to these digital assets can be difficult, if not impossible – the number of hoops that someone has to jump through.  FaceBook and Google have worked to put some solutions in place.  But these are just two companies (though they are extremely large!).  What about everything else you have on-line.

 

We have worked to solve this problem with language that will give you trusted agent, the person you want to handle your affairs when you can’t, the power to deal with your on-line portfolio.  This allows access to the person that you trust to gather the information, close accounts as appropriate, and get the digital asset to your loved ones in accordance to your overall plan.

Please make sure you have this ever growing asset class covered in your plan.  Contact us, and make an appointment to have your plan reviewed to see if your Digital Assets are covered.

jim-plitzContributed by Morris Hall, PLLC Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Las Cruces Estate Planning Attorney and Partner, James P. Plitz.

About Morris Hall, PLLC:
At Morris Hall, PLLC we have focused our legal practice on estate planning for over 45 years.  Along with estate planning, our attorneys help clients and their families with matters of probate, trust administration, wills, power of attorneys, business planning, succession planning, legacy planning, charitable gifting and other important legal aspects.  We also have divisions in financial, real estate and accounting to help you incorporate all of your planning together, ensuring that everything works perfectly for your needs and situation. Our Arizona offices are located in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Carefree, Tucson, Oro Valley, Prescott, Flagstaff and Arrowhead.  Our New Mexico offices are located in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

Help Your Parents

By | Estate Planning, Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time, Probate | No Comments

Did you know that without proper planning, you are sending your loved ones to court?  That is so strange to me.  We try to avoid going to court during our daily lives, but 70% of Americans are effectively saying, “I love you so much, off to court with you!”

I hear all of the time, “I will be dead, I don’t care how long it takes.  I don’t care how much it costs.”  And that is true, so I am starting a new campaign:

Help your parents plan their estate

By having your parents meet with an estate planning attorney, and to implement a proper estate plan (there are many unintended consequences for not having a proper estate plan), you are helping yourself (as well as your parents).  So if for no other reason, having your parents meet with one of our attorneys will save you a lot of headaches later on.

You will have a clear document that guides you through the administration process (the steps to be followed after a person dies with a proper estate plan).  There will be no court delays.  There will be no court cost.  There will be no court.  A proper estate plan, which utilizes a revocable trust as its foundation, avoids the court process of probate.

And that is the tip of the iceberg.  A proper plan can provide so much more for your parents, and ultimately for you.

Help your parents plan their estate their estate today.  Have them give us a call, and make an appointment to meet with one of our estate planning attorneys.  We will help them, and in turn, it will ultimately help you.

jim-plitzContributed by Morris Hall, PLLC Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Las Cruces Estate Planning Attorney and Partner, James P. Plitz.

About Morris Hall, PLLC:
At Morris Hall, PLLC we have focused our legal practice on estate planning for over 45 years.  Along with estate planning, our attorneys help clients and their families with matters of probate, trust administration, wills, power of attorneys, business planning, succession planning, legacy planning, charitable gifting and other important legal aspects.  We also have divisions in financial, real estate and accounting to help you incorporate all of your planning together, ensuring that everything works perfectly for your needs and situation. Our Arizona offices are located in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Carefree, Tucson, Oro Valley, Prescott, Flagstaff and Arrowhead.  Our New Mexico offices are located in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

 

Should You Make End-Of-Life Plans on Your Own?

By | Death Probate, Estate Planning, Living Probate, Other, Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time | No Comments

Another term for an estate plan should be a “legal vault”. The legal vault should be strong and sturdy to withstand any attack that may come against it. The question becomes, is your legal vault flimsy or solid to withstand what comes its way?

For some people, establishing an estate plan appears to be straightforward, simple and not requiring the guidance of an estate planning lawyer. For others that started off with this mindset, come to understand what was once simple, has turned into a complicated mess.

As with household repairs, some repairs can be fixed by the homeowner after a quick trip to the hardware store. The same is often said of estate planning - a trip to the office supply store with fill in the blank documents can be a quick cheap fix. However, here are just a few reasons why a trip to see an estate planning lawyer would be most helpful.

  1. Customizing a will – the online template fill in the blank documents don’t give much room for adding special language. Altering a will provision could possibly invalidate the entire will.
  2. Avoiding/minimizing death, income, and capital gains taxes.An estate planning lawyer can guide you through the various estate planning options to minimize and/or avoid the death tax that could come your family’s way upon your death. For example, a Revocable Living Trust is a common tool that is crafted to fit your individual goals and needs. Also, proper planning to minimize other tax implications of income and capital gains taxes.
  3. Avoiding a living and death probate. There are two types of probate that an estate planning lawyer can help you and your family members avoid – one while you are living, but unable to make your financial and healthcare decisions; and the other after you pass away and your assets need to be distributed with the least cost and delay. An estate planning lawyer can also help you with other legal tools, such as Powers of Attorney and a Living Will.
  4. Keeping your estate plan updated with law changes. Estate planning laws are constantly changing and an estate planning lawyer will be able to share those with you as they happen. It’s important to keep your plan up to date as your life changes, but also with the law changes that occur.

When you think of your legal vault, consider it anonymous with your legal legacy. You have worked hard to build your legacy, and we at Morris Hall, PLLC are here to make sure it withstands any storm that may come your way.

Wendy-Harn-Photo  Contributed by Morris Hall Tucson, Oro Valley, Green Valley Estate Planning Attorney and Partner, Wendy W. Harn.

What the Attorneys of Morris Hall, PLLC Can Do For You:
The attorneys at Morris Hall have 100’s of years of combined experience ensuring that families’ assets are protected from probate, unnecessary taxes, creditors, ex-spouses and Medicaid spend-down.  Our Arizona offices are located in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Carefree, Tucson, Oro Valley, Prescott, Flagstaff and Arrowhead.  Our New Mexico offices are located in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

 

Parents, Talk to Your Children about Your Estate Plan

By | Estate Planning, Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time | No Comments

A recent survey conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International (PSRAI) indicates that just over 55% of American parents have a basic estate plan.  Of those surveyed, over 54% don’t know the location of their parents’ estate plan, and 58% don’t know the contents of their parents’ estate plan.

Estate planning can be a very a sensitive subject.  It requires you to consider your own death and the distribution of your hard-earned assets.  Not a popular combination for most folks to think about.  However, estate planning conversations are necessary in order to prepare your children for what is to come.

Having a conversation with your children can provide you with the support and assurance that you are taking the right steps with your estate plan.  Most likely, your children will be your beneficiaries and/or your personal representative(s) or successor trustee(s).  Talking to your children about their role in your estate plan accomplishes three basic things:

  1. It helps you identify with confidence which of your children is best suited to carry-out your wishes after you’ve passed,

  1. It helps you clearly explain your intentions and desires, which can help diffuse any potential future conflicts, and

  1. It gives you the opportunity to tell your children the location of your estate plan and other important documents.

The conversation doesn’t need to be in great detail; quite the contrary, an estate plan is a private matter. Nevertheless, a basic conversation will give your children the road map they need to help ensure your wishes a carried-out, while reducing their stress and saving them time.

darren-richardson  Contributed by Morris Hall, PLLC Phoenix Estate Planning Attorney, Darren L. Richardson.

About Morris Hall, PLLC:
At Morris Hall, PLLC we have focused our legal practice on estate planning for over 45 years.  Along with estate planning, our attorneys help clients and their families with matters of probate, trust administration, wills, power of attorneys, business planning, succession planning, legacy planning, charitable gifting and other important legal aspects.  We also have divisions in financial, real estate and accounting to help you incorporate all of your planning together, ensuring that everything works perfectly for your needs and situation. Our Arizona offices are located in Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Carefree, Tucson, Oro Valley, Prescott, Flagstaff and Arrowhead.  Our New Mexico offices are located in Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

 

8 Estate Planning Things to Do Before You Travel

By | Attorney David Eastman, Estate Planning, Healthcare documents, Other, Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time, Preparedness | 2 Comments

Does your estate plan (or lack thereof) come to mind every time you board a plane or embark on a long drive? That’s because when we travel, many of us are reminded of our own mortality and the remote but real possibility that we might not return due to death or illness.

Before any trip, most of us create a “to-do list” of things we have put off and want to take care of before we leave. Here, then, is a checklist of estate planning things to do before your next trip. Taking care of these will help you travel with peace of mind, knowing that if you don’t return, you have made things much easier for those you love.

1. Have your estate planning done. If you have been procrastinating about your estate planning, use your next trip as your deadline to finally get this done. If you don’t have an attorney, ask friends and acquaintances for referrals. If you aren’t sure about some decisions, your attorney can help you. If money is tight, start with what you can afford (a will, power of attorney, health care documents) and upgrade to a living trust when you can. Be sure to allow adequate time to get your estate plan completed in advance of your trip.

2. Review and update your existing estate plan. Revisions should be made any time there are changes in your family (birth, death, marriage, divorce, remarriage), your finances, tax laws, or if a trustee or executor can no longer serve. Before you travel is a perfect time to do this. Again, be sure to allow enough time to have the changes made.

3. Review titles and beneficiary designations. If you have a living trust and did not finish changing titles and/or beneficiary designations, now is the time to do so. Some assets should not go into your trust, so check with your attorney and make sure those are as they should be. If a beneficiary has died or if you are divorced, change these immediately. Also, if your beneficiary is incapacitated or is a minor, setting up a trust for this person and naming the trust as beneficiary will prevent the court from taking control of the proceeds.

4. Review your plan for minor children. If you haven’t named a guardian who is able and willing to serve and something happens to you, the court will decide who will raise your kids without your input. If you have named a guardian, consider if this person is still the best choice. The person you name when your children are small may not be the best choice as they get older. This person may also change his/her mind, move away, become ill or die, so name at least one back-up in case your first choice cannot serve. Select someone responsible to manage the inheritance.

5. Review and update incapacity documents. Everyone in your family over the age of 18 needs to have these: 1) Durable Power of Attorney for Heath Care, which gives another person legal authority to make health care decisions (including life and death decisions) for you if you are unable to make them for yourself; and 2) HIPPA Authorizations, which give written consent for doctors to discuss your medical situation with others, including family members.

6. Review and update your insurance. Before you travel is an excellent time to do this. Check the amount of your life insurance coverage and see if it still meets your family’s needs. Consider getting long-term care insurance to help pay for the costs of long-term care (and preserve your assets for your family) in the event you and/or your spouse should need it due to illness or injury.

7. Organize your accounts and documents. This is an excellent thing to do before you travel, and it will make things much easier for your trustee/administrator. It used to be that we could just point to a file cabinet and say everything was “in there.” But now so much is done online that there may not even be a paper trail. Make a list of ALL of your accounts, where they are located, and the user names and passwords, then review and update it before each trip. Print a hard copy in case your computer is stolen or crashes and let someone you trust know where to find it. Clean up your computer desktop and put your financial and other important files where someone can easily find them. Make a back-up copy in case your computer is stolen or crashes, and let someone know where to find it. Be sure to include on your master list any passwords that might be needed to access your computer and files.

8. Talk to your children about your plan. You don’t have to show them bank and financial statements, but you can talk in general terms about what you are planning and why, especially when any changes are made. The more they understand your plan, the more likely they are to accept it—and that will help to avoid discord after you are gone. You can also talk to them about your values and the opportunities that money can provide.

dave-eastman  Contributed by Morris Hall, PLLC Arrowhead, Phoenix and Scottsdale Estate Planning Attorney and Partner, David T. Eastman.

Why Choose Morris Hall, PLLC:
You have a number of options when it comes to estate planning, so why pick Morris Hall?  First off, estate planning and asset protection are a very complicated endeavor and you should only trust someone who focuses exclusively on those matters.  Also, Morris Hall is a proud member of The American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys (AAEPA) which provides us additional support, advanced training, tools and information that is not available to others – which means that we can better protect your assets and your loved ones.  We are one of only three firms in Arizona that belong to the AAEPA and are the only firm in New Mexico that has been granted membership.  If you have assets and loved ones that you want to protect, you are in good hands with Morris Hall.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

 

Getting Organized

By | Estate Planning, Estate taxes, Other, Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time | No Comments

I was making lunch this morning, and went to fill the container with ice water, and I could not find the container.   It was not where it has always been.  I continued with my morning routine, and opened another cabinet to get a bowl for my cereal and there were the ice water containers!  My wife had re-organized the cabinets, though just slightly.

This got me thinking about all of the papers that we accumulate over the years – bank statements, insurance policies, deeds to properties – and wondered if anyone could find them if they needed to.  I need to make sure we are organized.

But organization is not really enough.  My ice water container conundrum was an issue I had in my own house – and I know where most things are.  Think about when you are in someone else’s house, and they asked you to grab a glass.  You end up opening 3 or 4 cabinets before finding the right one.  Your organization differs from theirs (you opened the cabinets you logical thought would hold the glassware).

So step one in your organization is to consolidate all of your papers.  Shred what is no longer owned or needed, and keep only the most recent statements.  If you sold a piece of property, shred that old deed.  If a life insurance policy lapsed, shred that policy.

Step two is to make sure all of your accounts, properties and policies are listed somewhere.  I run into countless family members asking me what was in mom or dad’s estate, and I would not know.  There are billions of dollars throughout the country that are “unclaimed” because as people pass away, family members are not aware that an asset exists, and do not put in the proper claim.  This can be easily avoided by simply keeping track of what you own.

Finally, step three is to make sure there is a “map” or directions to where all of these important papers are located.  This “map” needs to be able to be found.  We provide our clients with these tools, so the “map” is with the other estate planning documents – ready to be used as needed.

Not finding the container cost me a couple of minutes in looking.  Not finding an asset can cost thousands of dollars in time and effort, and potentially that asset could remain unclaimed.

Get organized today.

Albuquerque, New Mexico Estate Planning Attorney James PlitzContributed by MH Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Las Cruces Estate Planning Attorney, James P. Plitz.

Why Choose Morris Hall:
You have a number of options when it comes to estate planning, so why pick Morris Hall?  First off, estate planning and asset protection are a very complicated endeavor and you should only trust someone who focuses exclusively on those matters.  Also, MH is a proud member of The American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys (AAEPA) which provides us additional support, advanced training, tools and information that is not available to others – which means that we can better protect your assets and your loved ones.  We are one of only two firms in Arizona that belong to the AAEPA and are the only firm in New Mexico that has been granted membership.  If you have assets and loved ones that you want to protect, you are in good hands with MH.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.

Digital Asset Planning

By | Estate Planning, Estate taxes, Other, Planning Ahead: One Week at a Time | No Comments

Advancements in technology these days are a good thing, right? Sure they are, but when we talk about the importance of estate planning for assets with account and policy numbers, we shouldn’t forget about planning for the digital assets.

The digital assets we may have when we pass away may include the following:

  • Online banking
  • iTunes
  • E-mail
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • LinkedIn
  • Pinterest
  • Photo sharing

As technology increases, this list will continue to grow. What do the above digital assets have in common? They each require a password for accessibility. If we become incapacitated or when we pass away, our loved ones must have access to our master list of digital assets and passwords. If this master list doesn’t exist, precious memories and financial accounts may be lost forever.

Where should the master list be kept? A safe place, such as a safe deposit box works very well. The most important thing is for your loved ones to know which location you have placed this information.

How do we plan for our digital assets? The person(s) you have chosen in your Will or Trust need to be given the authority to take control over all your assets, including your digital assets.

Unfortunately, most people are only focused on planning for the more common assets, such as real property, retirement, life insurance, etc. However, we shouldn’t let the advances of the technology world leave our loved ones in a situation where they are unable to retrieve our other non-financial assets after we pass away.

In order to keep your estate plan up to date with the ever changing fast paced world of technology, please see one of our experienced estate planning attorneys for a comprehensive review of your plan. Your family will be thankful that you did!

Morris Hall Can Protect You in Today’s Litigious Society:
We live in a litigious society, where over 1 million lawsuits are filed every year in America alone.  Financial predators are looking for ways to take funds from others and often use litigation as their means to do so.  At Morris Hall we provide your assets and your loved ones with important protections that can prevent financial predators from taking advantage of you.  We do this through proper and current estate planning techniques.  With an MH living trust, we can also protect your property, assets and loved ones from probate, estate taxes, gift taxes, creditors, Medicaid spend-down, conservatorship or guardianship proceedings, ex-spouses and more.  A living trust also keeps your asset and beneficiary information private and secure to avoid giving financial predators information to use against you and your family.  Without a living trust, this information will be made public.  For those living in Arizona, we serve the areas of Phoenix, Mesa, Gilbert, Fountain Hills, Scottsdale, Cave Creek, Prescott, Flagstaff, Sedona, Tucson, Sonoita, Arrowhead, Avondale, Goodyear and Tempe.  In New Mexico we serve the areas of Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Las Cruces, Rio Rancho, White Rock, Alamogordo, Truth or Consequences and more.  Contact us today at 888.222.1328 to schedule an appointment with an attorney in your area!

This blog should be used for informational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice.  If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney in your community who can assess the specifics of your situation.