Your Amazing Itty Bitty® “Before” Financial Checklist

This book is helpful if you:

  • Are starting to assist your aging parents
  • Are 50+ and thinking about the second half of your life
  • Never want to cause your family additional financial stress
  • Want to get your financial house in order
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Step 13-15

The Experts

The Tax Expert

No one wants to pay more taxes than required, at any time of life. There may be a few tax-saving opportunities that can be lost at death if not acted upon before death, so you should meet with your tax advisor to discuss as the laws do change.

  1. Meet with your tax advisor to update him/her on the potential terminal or incapacity situation.
  2. Inquire about whether there are any unrealized gains that should be realized in order to use up any tax loss carryovers from previous years that could otherwise be lost upon death.
  3. Same question with charitable contribution carryovers that could be lost upon death.
  4. Consult your tax advisor for any additional tax planning considerations allowable by current law.

The Legal Expert

So many clichés in life end up being so true, including the one that reminds us “we get what we pay for.” Don’t try to take any shortcuts with your estate planning – see an attorney.

  1. Ongoing visits with an estate planning attorney, especially near the end, will be invaluable in getting things where you want them to go with the least cost and delay.
  2. Estate planning documents are less likely to be contested if drafted by an attorney vs. a fill-in-the-blank will/trust kit.
  3. Gifting limits and charitable contributions can be thought through more thoroughly.
  4. Direct payments to medical, dental or educational institutions (none of which count toward the annual gift exclusion amount) may make sense to consider.

The Planning Expert

The tax advisor helps consider taxes, the legal expert gives advice based on the law, but there is no one overseeing the big picture of your financial life with you so consider working with a financial advisor.

  1. A CFP, Certified Financial Planner, has a fiduciary duty to advise on what is in your best interest.
  2. For help acting on the tax and legal advisor’s advice, as well as to consider all areas of financial planning, a CFP® can be your advocate and assist in communicating and implementing the advice of the team of advisors.
  3. It’s tough; we sometimes don’t want our children too involved, this is not an area we are comfortable talking about in detail with other family or friends, so who else can we turn to?
  4. You need someone licensed (so you are protected), experienced (so you are not the guinea pig) and trustworthy (so you don’t get hurt), who will care about, and  help to take care of your financial needs.

For more on these chapters and other steps to take before a major life event happens, check out my book the “Before” Financial Checklist: 15 Important Actions to Complete Before the Loss of a Loved One, available on Amazon.

 

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This book is small but jam-packed with so much useful information if you are over 50, approaching retirement or helping aging parents prepare. There is an easy way to transition and a hard way. This book is a guide to the easy way.

Diane Markins / Amazon Reviewer

So much great information in this book! It really does take you step-by-step and guides you on how to plan for these unfortunate events. It’s short and sweet but gives you all the information you need, even things you would never think about needing to do. I even purchased a few of them for my friends who are helping their aging parents.

Marcia B / Amazon Reviewer

Your Amazing Itty Bitty® “After” Financial Checklist

This book is helpful if you:

  • Are thinking ahead regarding your own estate
  • Have lost a spouse, parent, friend, or other family member
  • Are aware of a terminal condition and trying to prepare for what’s to come
  • Are unsure about what is involved after the loss of a loved one and want to become more aware
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Step 11

The First Month: Miscellaneous “To Dos”

  1. Go to the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) to cancel driver’s license and transfer vehicle title.
  2. Notify the Registrar of Voters.
  3. Cancel any medication prescriptions, print subscriptions, and memberships.
  4. Delete online personal accounts: email, social media, business sites, etc., to avoid fraud or identity theft. Procedures for each will vary.
  5. Send out acknowledgements for cards, donations, etc., if you’ve decided that is something you want to do. This can also be delayed until a time that you are ready and able to tackle this project.
  6. Contact the Post Office with forwarding information, if necessary.
  7. Cancel all services no longer needed, i.e. phone, internet, cable, etc.
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Marie has provided two amazingly simple, but well- defined booklets that answer the BIG questions for many who are anticipating, or have lost a loved one. I found them insightful because they took what felt like giant fears of “unknown tasks,” out of my journey as a new widow.

Doreen Hanna / Founder, It’s A New Day Widow’s Ministry

This is a great guide to addressing all those important details in a loved ones financial history. You will be glad you have this book to help you through it.

Jeannine Hurrish / Amazon Reviewer

Getting Financially Organized

This book is helpful if you:

  • Are trying to get your financial records organized and up-to-date
  • Want to make sure your documents accurately reflect your wishes
  • Want to ensure a shorter, less stressful and often less costly process for your family
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and then there was one

Book by Charlotte Fox

Guidelines for End-of-Life Preparedness

A comprehensive step-by-step workbook to promote conversation, express your wishes, ease transition, and protect your survivors when a loved one dies. This 264-page workbook provides over 70 fill-in-the-blank forms to prepare your estate plan before and after the loss. Help protect your survivors so they have all the information necessary to effectuate your estate upon your death.

therewasone.com

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