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McCurrie McCurrie
& McCurrie, L.L.C.

680 Kearny Avenue
Kearny, NJ 07032-3010
Phone: (201) 467-4180
Fax: (201) 997-9567
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Beneficiary designations matter in New Jersey estate planning

Many people might not think about their various financial accounts when discussing their estate planning needs. These accounts often ask people for beneficiary designations when you sign up for them. This would be who money or assets from those accounts would go to if a person was to pass away. Sometimes people don't update their beneficiaries and hope that a will or other estate planning device can cover the person's assets. This can be a costly mistake depending on the person's state of mind.

It might be important to reevaluate beneficiary designations periodically with companies, especially after a life change that may change a person's mind about where certain assets should go. Speaking with an experienced estate planning attorney might be a wise idea if there is confusion as to how beneficiary designations affect an estate plan.

Sometimes these beneficiaries might need to be included in another estate document, and they might be considered for certain estate taxes. If there are discrepancies between a beneficiary designation with a company and a designation outlined in an estate planning document, a situation may become complicated.

After the death of a loved one, estate planning matters can seem complex. By making sure beneficiaries are consistent across all documents, a family can help avoid confusion and legal complications. An estate planning attorney can also help a family work through confusing estate planning issues after the death of a loved one. By planning for the unexpected, families can help avoid stressful estate planning issues during an already very emotional time.

Source: The Star-Ledger, "Biz Brain: Getting an estate in order and planning for death taxes," Karin Price Mueller, Aug. 20, 2012

- Our law firm handles many different estate planning issues. To learn more about beneficiary designations and their effects on a person's overall estate, please visit our estate planning website.

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