Proper Account Titling and Beneficiary Designations

Rosanne Auslander, of Summit Place, writes about the importance of proper account titling and beneficiary designations in the estate planning process on  Her article begins as follows:

Your client has prepared estate documents to ensure that his assets are passed to the next generation according to his wishes.  However, his will and trusts are only one part of the framework that dictates how his assets will be distributed after his death.  The other important components are account titling and beneficiary designations.  Coordinating account titling and beneficiary designations is a critical, yet often overlooked, element of a successful estate plan.  It can ensure that your client’s assets pass to his heirs in the way in which he intended and help minimize estate taxes.

Many people unwittingly title accounts or designate unnecessary beneficiaries in a way that undermines the estate plan established in their will and trusts.  Help your client  avoid these needless errors by explaining the various account titling options and the use of beneficiary designations.

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Posted by Lewis J. Saret, Co-General Editor, Wealth Strategies Journal.