Are Your Documents Up To Date and Signed?

I’ve written a lot of these blogs in the past and I always begin with the same phrase, “I know it’s not an easy thing to think of, but …” and yes, this is going to be one of those blogs. One of the most important things that you can do for your family is to make sure that all of your documents are in order. That means your John or Jane Hancock has to be there, otherwise, the people you leave behind will have a lot of red tape to cut through.

I recently heard a story about a man who had died suddenly, leaving behind a young adult son.  Like many of us, the man who died had been at a job that had offered him life insurance and certain other benefits when he retired.  However, as the grieving son began to sort through things, he realized that his father had never signed any of the paperwork that would have put these benefits into effect.    
 
Maybe the father thought he’d get around to it soon, maybe he thought that he had already signed the papers, maybe there was a miscommunication with the company, but the reality of it is that this man’s only heir is now left with a lot less than what his father intended.  Furthermore, when he should be mourning the death of his father, the son is now having to deal with human resource departments, insurance companies, and attorneys.

This all could have been avoided had the father taken a few moments to check that his affairs were in order.    
 
Over the next few weeks, take some time to check in with your employer—or yourself if you are your own employer—to make sure that you’ve signed up for all the benefits that will protect your family in the event of your death or disability.  Make sure these papers have been properly filled out, and that your beneficiary designations are current. 
 
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard of ex-spouses still being the beneficiary of a life insurance policy when a new spouse is in the picture. This can make for an extremely uncomfortable situation for all involved.
 
If it’s been a few years since you’ve reviewed your estate plan, go over that as well to make sure it is still up to date. If you drafted your estate plan yet or it needs to be updated, please contact our office at (978) 269-4485 and we’ll be happy to help you get started.   

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Leslie Russell
Leslie Russell
00:41 09 Aug 21
I can not thank Jason enough for his help. His work has given me peace of mind during a time where caring for a loved one is not easy. I really appreciate his temperament and legal ease.
Karen Shuman
Karen Shuman
18:26 06 Aug 21
My experience with Attorney Jason R. Ebacher was excellent from the very first phone call. Jason is professional above all else in addition to being friendly, compassionate, helpful and knowledgeable. He provided me with enough information and guidance to enable me to make solid choices with regard to my estate planning. I highly recommend Jason and his team.
Kristen Wilson
Kristen Wilson
15:25 05 Aug 21
Attorney Jason Ebacher is professional, knowledgeable, and kind. He is always readily available to answer any questions. I highly recommend Jason to anyone.
Essential Balance Wellness
Essential Balance Wellness
13:46 05 Aug 21
You dont know what tomorrow will bring. The only way to make sure the people you love are taken care of, is to make a plan....while your healthy and in good sound mind. There TRULY is "peace of mind in proper planning"
Angie Vargas
Angie Vargas
17:53 17 Mar 21
Jason is a trusted volunteer with our non-profit legal aid organization, where he provides quality pro bono estate planning assistance to some of our clients and is always willing to go the extra mile. During the pandemic, he has remain committed to this work and we greatly appreciate him.
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