Author Topic: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.  (Read 34631 times)

FireLane

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This is such a good idea for a thread. DS is a year old and Mrs. FL and I have no excuse for not having our wills made out yet. Neither of us is planning to die any time soon, but if anything did happen to us, we need to make sure he'll be taken care of.

We really need to make an appointment with a lawyer and sort this out. Hopefully, this thread title popping up in my unread-posts list whenever I log on will be the prodding I need to get it done in 2018.

Well, I meant to get this done in 2018 and that didn't happen... but I'm happy to say it's done now!

We've been exchanging e-mails with a lawyer friend for months. We told him our wishes, he pointed out some things we hadn't considered, and this week we finally met with him and got the papers signed. I'm still not planning to die any time soon, but it's a weight off my shoulders knowing that it's done at last.

mspym

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@FireLane High five! That's great!

ForeverPoor

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Have always had voluntary life insurance maxed due to my employer but haven't touched any of the others listed in topic... maybe it's time I visit them.

Hula Hoop

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Good for you, FIRE at 45!

I have a basic question.  My father in New York State already has a will but now he wants to do a POA and a living will with me the person with the POA etc.  However, I live in Italy.  Can he execute the document without my presence?  Or does he have to wait until I visit him next time probably this summer?

CrustyBadger

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@Hula Hoop I am guessing that he could send you a copy of the PDA and the Living Will, and you could sign them in the presence of a Notary Public. You can find one at the US Embassy.

https://it.usembassy.gov/u-s-citizen-services/notarial-services/

Hula Hoop

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Thanks, CB.  I'll look into that.

Goldielocks

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I just reduced DH and my life insurance to $100k on each of us.   Deep breath.

Baby steps.   We jumped into the next higher cost band this year, so I am just dropping it to keep costs constant.  Technically, we should be able to self-fund, because we are pretty much FIRED on a fraction of our prior incomes, youngest kid will be 17 soon and we have their education funds sorted out. 

For some reason, I like the insurance safety net... hard habit to shake once you have it.

I will have to update the wills once the youngest is no longer a minor.

Goldielocks

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I just reduced DH and my life insurance to $100k on each of us.   Deep breath.

Baby steps.   We jumped into the next higher cost band this year, so I am just dropping it to keep costs constant.  Technically, we should be able to self-fund, because we are pretty much FIRED on a fraction of our prior incomes, youngest kid will be 17 soon and we have their education funds sorted out. 

For some reason, I like the insurance safety net... hard habit to shake once you have it.

I will have to update the wills once the youngest is no longer a minor.

Interesting.  I've self insured for years now.
Glad to hear others have the same approach to getting self-insured eventually.   We were up at $450k each 3 years ago, and I have so much trouble going cold turkey with a huge mortgage, still.  (Mortgage value is much larger than the insurance).   It is one of the hidden costs of "Don't pay off your mortgage club"...   At some level, when you have large expenses (mortgage), you still want insurance, even if you could self-insure.   If we paid down the mortgage and have smaller investments, I think I would get rid of the life insurance, which is not logical, but there you go.

Not sure how I feel about other types of insurance,  I am at a $1million coverage for liabiity (professional / 3rd party car insurance).  When you have FIRE assets, you want some protection, you know?  Anyway, that is a different thread from life insurance / wills.

mspym

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I just changed over my super provider and dropped my life insurance at the same time to just what is included by the fund. We have no mortgage, and we have both super and investments we could draw on so it was scary but also just done now.

I think my last item on my list is writing my will.

letsdoit

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we have wills POA and extra life insurance.  $1 mill umbrella insurance for $200/yr

mine extra life insurance is not cheap bc i'm a man (i know i'm getting ripped off bc i'm so healthy)
but i still have it for my kids. 

i tried to renegotiate car insurance but have not succeeded yet


Poundwise

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I called a lawyer last week and left a message saying we'd like to update our will.

Her office called back left a message on my machine.

My move!

SuperSecretName

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after a year of procrastinating, I'm finally get this done :)

I'm using the lawyer that did my divorce.  $1k all in.  Maybe a little high, but there are some unique custody issues to consider.  I didn't think it worth it to shop around to save a few hundred, maybe.

2sk22

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This is a good challenge for me - my goal is to get our wills and directives squared away in the next couple of months.

jim555

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How do you get a good Executor / Executrix?  No one I know I would trust to handle this.

meerkat

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How do you get a good Executor / Executrix?  No one I know I would trust to handle this.

A lawyer, accountant, or bank can serve as your executor. The lawyer/law office that drafted your will cannot serve as the executor, however, due to possible conflict of interest.

iris lily

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How do you get a good Executor / Executrix?  No one I know I would trust to handle this.

We donít have children so I am less concerned about having a good executor then probably parents with children. But we chose our friend who is frugal along with our siblings,. They operate as a team and may make decisions independently of one another. I think thatís OK
, theyíre all reasonable people.I think they will have similar mindsets and disposing of property.

SwordGuy

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We have an appointment next week with a lawyer to get our wills and other pertinent documents drawn up.

Hopefully the formal paperwork will be  done within a week or so of that.

I've already written up a "things you need to know" document but I'm going to cross-check it with the excellent list of items I just read in this thread.   

I've got a 2 hour meeting with my son and his wife scheduled for our next get together.  My wife will take the grandkids to the movie so we can have undisturbed conversation time.   I want to make sure they both know basic money and investment concepts and have time to ask questions, etc.  As Jim Rohn quipped, if you end up with a million dollars, it's best to learn how to manage it or you won't be a millionaire for long.

2sk22

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Took the first step - got the names of a couple of lawyers in the area. I know this seems like a really small step but it is already more than I've done so far :-)

happy

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Have got my solicitor to draw up will, POA and EG.   No life insurance...cancelled it all years ago when i realised if I die my kids will be well off, since I won't have to pay for my reitirement. Need to make followup appointments to get this all signed off.

A Fella from Stella

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Yes! One of my goals this year is a real will.

I have my estate clearly laid out with 6 pages of detailed instructions on how to manage/distribute the money. Just updated and sent to the executor and guardian, but do not have a real will.

Life insurance is covered. $1,000,000 for my on a term, $210k from work, and my wife has $500k from work.

2sk22

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Actually set up an appointment with a lawyer for tomorrow to start work on wills. I've been putting this off for years so I'm glad to have overcome inertia!

2sk22

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Had appointment with lawyer and got the process of creating our wills moving.

happy

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All done. Completed  Will, Power of Attorney and Enduring Guardianship this last week. Feels good to have it done. Cost 2k, which includes the upmarket version of the will including testamentary trusts etc.

No life insurance, I don't need it.

meerkat

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Had appointment with lawyer and got the process of creating our wills moving.

Nice job!

All done. Completed  Will, Power of Attorney and Enduring Guardianship this last week. Feels good to have it done. Cost 2k, which includes the upmarket version of the will including testamentary trusts etc.

No life insurance, I don't need it.

Good for you!

ToTheMoon

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I am so glad this thread popped up again - I needed the reminder to review our will and potentially make changes.  In the 5+ years since we did it up there have been lots of changes (children & health challenges) for the persons we had assigned as guardians for our children.  Also we have had a few friends whose parents have passed recently and the nightmares of 20+ and 30+ year old wills that have never been updated have been shocking.  Way too many extra hoops to jump through for those who are supposed to be grieving. 

How often do you think it is prudent to review? Every 5 years or if a big life change happens?

RetiredAt63

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How often do you think it is prudent to review? Every 5 years or if a big life change happens?

I'd say a quick mental review every year to think about changes - if they are major then do the will changes.

My will was done in 2012?  2013?  It didn't need changing until now.  My sister was executor and there would have been a house to sell - she is retired and has the time and experience to do that.  Now that the house is sold and all my major assets are more liquid I will be redoing my will and my DD will be my executor.  I just couldn't ask her to do it when there was a house in the picture - she doesn't live near here and she has a full time job, it would have been very difficult for her.

Roadrunner53

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Hub and I have no children or close relatives. Who would we appoint as an executor if we both croak? We do have an ancient will that needs updating but we also don't really know how to disperse our savings either. We have, in our original will, that the money will go to animal welfare in our town. That is, if there is any moola left! Our original will specified that the money be divided among our parents but all four are long gone. Spouse has 3 siblings that are estranged. I have no siblings.

Omy

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PTF so it will be a regular reminder to tackle this soon!

Neustache

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I need to do this.  We have life insurance but no wills, and we want to be able to say who the kids will go to if we die.  Posting so this pops up in my 'replies to your posts"!

SwordGuy

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Hub and I have no children or close relatives. Who would we appoint as an executor if we both croak? We do have an ancient will that needs updating but we also don't really know how to disperse our savings either. We have, in our original will, that the money will go to animal welfare in our town. That is, if there is any moola left! Our original will specified that the money be divided among our parents but all four are long gone. Spouse has 3 siblings that are estranged. I have no siblings.

I suspect if your spouse has no will and dies after you, the 3 estranged siblings will be getting the estate.

If you don't want them to have it, get a will. And when you're doing it, ask the lawyer whether it's best to specifically exclude said siblings.

Roadrunner53

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Hub and I have no children or close relatives. Who would we appoint as an executor if we both croak? We do have an ancient will that needs updating but we also don't really know how to disperse our savings either. We have, in our original will, that the money will go to animal welfare in our town. That is, if there is any moola left! Our original will specified that the money be divided among our parents but all four are long gone. Spouse has 3 siblings that are estranged. I have no siblings.

I suspect if your spouse has no will and dies after you, the 3 estranged siblings will be getting the estate.

If you don't want them to have it, get a will. And when you're doing it, ask the lawyer whether it's best to specifically exclude said siblings.

We have a will from 1991 that has not been updated. Each of Hubs siblings would get a very minor amount of money each, but now I'd like to cut them out completely. Our old will specifies that all our money go to animal welfare in our town and not to his siblings.

Parizade

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PTF. Now that I'm FIRE I have no excuse to keep putting this off. Mine will be simple, everything to my son/DIL/granddaughter, but I need to put together a list of all my accounts and how to access them, make sure I have them designated as beneficiaries, etc.

SwordGuy

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Our "Things You Need To Know" document for our heirs has the following topics in it (and of course they'll know where to find it):


Contacts:   Business partners, people we routinely do business with: realtor, lawyer, accountants.

Things to do: Add a change of address so mail goes to their home, refresh it at the end of the next 2 years to get those once a year documents.

Where things likely are in the house:   Documents, checkbooks, mortgage coupon payment book, gun safe key, keys to rental properties, etc.

Land: List of property and the URL for the registry of deeds to double-check the document is up to date.   Associated payment schedules and bills for those properties.

Accounts Receivable: Any mortgage notes or loans that others owe us for.

Liabilities: Mortgage, property taxes, HELOC.

What do to with things they don't want:  Suggestions for places to charitably donate the items to and local estate sale companies that do a good job.

Burial wishes:  Keep it simple, keep it inexpensive, have a wake and invite our friends.

Family obligations on farmland ownership that's shared with my mom's side of the family:  Advice on how to handle things and what we would recommend if other relatives want to sell.

Banks:  Banks we do business with and why

Investment Accounts:  Places that hold our stock/bond portfolios.

Insurance:  Who we have insurance with.

Money and Investment Advice:  Little snippets of wisdom that hopefully will help them avoid big mistakes.  Plus an attempt to teach the right mindset.  Things like if you want a luxury that will require an ongoing expense, set up an investment that will provide an income stream to pay for it.


Hope that helps!








meerkat

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Our "Things You Need To Know" document for our heirs has the following topics in it (and of course they'll know where to find it):

That's great! Mind if I add it to the resources at the beginning?

SwordGuy

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Our "Things You Need To Know" document for our heirs has the following topics in it (and of course they'll know where to find it):

That's great! Mind if I add it to the resources at the beginning?

Sure, go ahead!   

Jim Fiction

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What a tremendous resource this thread is!

Posting to follow and as a self-reminder.


Parizade

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Our "Things You Need To Know" document for our heirs has the following topics in it (and of course they'll know where to find it):

That's great! Mind if I add it to the resources at the beginning?

I agree, thanks for sharing your list with us @SwordGuy

Kapiira

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #187 on: August 28, 2019, 11:43:34 AM »
I just wanted to celebrate getting my in-laws to fill out their heath POA, living will, and durable POA.  Next, we're holding each other accountable on getting our wills taken care of.  It feels good to make progress!

Sanitary Engineer

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #188 on: September 03, 2019, 10:00:45 AM »
I want to do this. 

Goals:
  • Life Insurance for DW
  • Advance Directives for each other
  • bug out bag and emergency evacuation procedure
  • set more goals

Sailor Sam

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #189 on: October 16, 2021, 06:59:16 PM »
Yearly bump.

I done got divorced, and am in the process of updating my will, and powers of attorney. The final monetary effect of The Sunndering will be flying from Washington DC, to Seattle, Washington to sign the documentation in front of the lawyer, like a good little boy.

This spasm is also partially motivated by the sudden death of a family member, and our search for a will. Cracking into her digital life, to try and see if thereís any correspondence with a lawyer, etc. Which lead to the question: how will you pass on your digital life to your loved ones or executor?

My strategy is to sign up for 1Password. Iíve been spending 10 minutes each day transferring all my scattered emails, keychains, and jotted notes over to that. Iíll write the master password down, and stick that into the envelope with my will. Iíll probably add the pin I use for my phones and iPads.

Anyone have a better strategy for digital inheritance??

Dee18

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #190 on: October 17, 2021, 05:39:41 AM »
SailorSam's great question, for which I do not know the answer, brought my attention to this excellent thread.  Looking back at Meerkat and SwordGuy's very helpful list at the beginning of the thread I did not see a discussion of beneficiaries for investment accounts, including IRAs, 401(k)s, and 403(b)s, and pensions.  Everyone needs to know that beneficiary designations on accounts override wills.  The great thing about this is that for most accounts you can designate or update beneficiaries quickly and easily online.  It's great to check them once a year and make sure you still want the same designations. You can also add beneficiaries to bank accounts. 

ToTheMoon

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #191 on: October 17, 2021, 08:41:22 AM »
This spasm is also partially motivated by the sudden death of a family member, and our search for a will. Cracking into her digital life, to try and see if thereís any correspondence with a lawyer, etc. Which lead to the question: how will you pass on your digital life to your loved ones or executor?

My strategy is to sign up for 1Password. Iíve been spending 10 minutes each day transferring all my scattered emails, keychains, and jotted notes over to that. Iíll write the master password down, and stick that into the envelope with my will. Iíll probably add the pin I use for my phones and iPads.

Anyone have a better strategy for digital inheritance??

I use Dashlane for password management, and it has an emergency feature that you set up to release your passwords to designated people after your demise. I believe they trigger it, and then it sends daily emails/texts to you for a set number of days (giving you opportunity to intercept if you are indeed still on this planet.) When the set amount of days goes by without your interference, the passwords then release to your designated people.

I would check to see if 1password offers something similar - I would guess that they do.

This has got me thinking - it also has a secure notes area - I wonder if I could keep a copy of my will in there as well, just in case the original goes astray.  Hmm...

Dee18

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #192 on: October 17, 2021, 09:24:59 AM »
In most jurisdictions you can file a copy of your will with the probate court, the old-fashioned way to ensure there's a copy available.

Goldielocks

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #193 on: October 17, 2021, 03:17:56 PM »
Yearly bump.

I done got divorced, and am in the process of updating my will, and powers of attorney. The final monetary effect of The Sunndering will be flying from Washington DC, to Seattle, Washington to sign the documentation in front of the lawyer, like a good little boy.

This spasm is also partially motivated by the sudden death of a family member, and our search for a will. Cracking into her digital life, to try and see if thereís any correspondence with a lawyer, etc. Which lead to the question: how will you pass on your digital life to your loved ones or executor?

My strategy is to sign up for 1Password. Iíve been spending 10 minutes each day transferring all my scattered emails, keychains, and jotted notes over to that. Iíll write the master password down, and stick that into the envelope with my will. Iíll probably add the pin I use for my phones and iPads.

Anyone have a better strategy for digital inheritance??
I got divorced this year, too.  Final papers came through about 2 months ago (it was a 2 year process, Canada has a mandatory 1 year separation before filing, I dragged my feet,  and the courts are backlogged, even for rubber stamped no contest divorces).

With my youngest kid 19 (age of majority here), and newly single life, I have booked my wills appointment with my lawyer for next week.  Have already changed my beneficiaries on everything.

For passwords...  the lawyer includes a sheet / comment about "digital assets" -- without passwords but notes what key items are there for executor to even find. 

My password strategy is to have 3-4 "rings" of passwords.  One for banking (unique, secure), one for things my credit card or taxes, etc. is attached to, one for google / iphone / work identity stuff, and a generic one that I use for everything else (like MMM).

Setting up 2factor authorizations when possible also helps.  This basically means only 4 passwords to write down somewhere and only 3 to update on an on-going basis.

better late

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #194 on: October 17, 2021, 10:19:42 PM »
Glad this thread popped up. Have had the draft will on my desk for the last couple of months. Need to finalize and sign!

Britan

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #195 on: October 18, 2021, 07:53:53 AM »
Woosh this is timely. Expecting #2, and Iím still dragging my feet on life insurance quotes. Ok, gonna put this out in the universe so now I have some sense of accountability lol. Going to get this done. We need everything still. No will, no insurance, no written guardian for the kids (just verbal agreements but for Reasons, we need to get this in writing).

2sk22

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #196 on: October 18, 2021, 09:48:43 AM »
Finally, after several years of procrastination, my wife and I just went and signed our wills, POA and living will at our lawyers office. This task had been hanging over my head for at least the last three years. What a relief it is to get this taken care of!

Sailor Sam

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Re: Get Your Shit Together! Wills, living wills, POAs, life insurance, etc.
« Reply #197 on: October 18, 2021, 10:10:23 AM »
I've got a list of shit to get together:
  • Find lawyer to do Will, and Powers of Attorney
  • Meet with lawyer
  • Do what lawyer says to establish trust for minor children & guardianship for Tiny Dog
  • Sign Will & POA
  • Update SGLI beneficiary to Tiny Dog guardian
  • Update USAA Pay on Death to Executor
  • Update Vanguard, Betterment, TSP beneficiary to trust for minor children
  • Provide Will, POA, and quick start document to executor and guardians