For example, did you name someone as an heir who is no longer in favor with you or—worse yet—has died? Who should get what they would have gotten? Are there now new people in your life—be they family members or not—whom you might wish to share in what you may have?
During the past four months, more than 141,000 Americans have died of COVID-19. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the pandemic has prompted some people to get serious about creating or updating their estate plans, according to Christine Benz, Morningstar’s director of personal finance.
As nursing homes in many states start to emerge from a four-month lockdown, residents and their loved ones are desperate for in-person visits. The federal government has issued guidelines for reopening nursing homes to visitors, and more than half of the states have authorized limited visitation.
Whenever you open a financial account, you’re almost always asked to name a beneficiary. Simply stated, a beneficiary of the account is someone who is entitled to the benefits of the account, typically, on the death of the account holder. If you’ve purchased life insurance, for example, you name a beneficiary, who receives the benefits of the policy when you pass.