Everyone should have a safe place where they keep their important documents. Whether it is a safe deposit box at the bank or a fireproof safe in your closet, being organized will help you while you are alive and help your estate pass after your death.
Putting the file together doesn’t have to be time consuming, but it is definitely worth the effort for your own peace of mind. It will also help your loved ones after your passing. Careful organization can reduce the amount of stress that accompanies a loss. It can also provide them with some direction when they need it most.
Your original Will is the most important document in your file. According to Idaho law, you may also have created a list of personal property you would like to leave to specific heirs. This handwritten, signed, and dated list should be with you Will. You can update and rewrite the list as often as you need and to account for items coming in and out of your estate.
If you have executed a living trust, then the trust documents should be in your file. You need to have proof of ownership of real property, cemetery plots, vehicles, stock certificates, savings bonds, business agreements, and lists of other brokerage and bank accounts. Be sure to include information regarding your life insurance policies and also retirement accounts.
While financial documents are the obvious choice, there are other important documents that need to be in the file. Your marriage certificate, divorce decree, and Living Will can provide the assistance you need during your lifetime and also aid your heirs as they administrate your estate. Powers of Attorney are also useful documents to have in your file. They come in many different forms and each has a specific purpose. If your file is missing some of these documents, contact Lerma Grover Law so that we can help you set your affairs in order.