The June wedding was spectacular and the newlyweds are back. So, what’s estate planning and life insurance got to do with it?
As newly married couples continue to bask in the afterglow of their romantic honeymoon, it’s hard for them to imagine how anything could jeopardize their happiness. What could possibly happen?
Life happens. And with that reality check comes the need for all couples — especially newlyweds — to take control of their circumstances in order to ensure a more financially stable future for themselves and their families.
Insurance professionals whose clients include recently married couples are in a key position to remind them of the importance of having their estate planning documents in order. Most couples who are just starting out in life simply are not aware of the financial and legal consequences of what would happen without the proper planning.
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While many smart couples began to do basic financial planning long before the wedding — such as preparing a monthly budget, deciding whether to rent or buy, and agreeing on whose furniture to keep — some couples overlook the importance of the following:
Life insurance beneficiary designations: Immediately update the beneficiary information on life insurance coverage, including group coverage at work. This will ensure that in the event of death, the surviving spouse receives the proceeds, versus parents or a former significant other who may have been a previous choice as beneficiary.
Titling jointly owned property: It’s important to correctly title jointly owned property. Married couples should consider Tenants by Entireties form of ownership (TBE). TBE property can protect both parties from an individual spouse’s creditors seeking to attach the assets. For example, if one spouse injures a third party in a car accident, the injured party likely will not be able to take the TBE brokerage account in a lawsuit.