Navy Mutual News & Media

Planning Ahead

Published on February 20, 2017

Below is an excerpt from the article that our Senior Education Presenter, Bob Bieri, wrote for the December 2016 edition of the United States Coast Guard Retiree Council NorthWest: Pacific Currents Newsletter:

"We have all undoubtedly heard the phrase: 'we don’t plan to fail but rather fail to plan.' Estate planning brings fear to some, while others may think they do not have an “estate.” They do. Your estate is simply all the property you own, whatever it’s worth. Most retirees need to sensibly plan for the transfer of property to their loved ones after they die, with minimum hassle and cost. The good news is that a little organization and thinking ahead go a long way to making things easier for your family.

The first organizational step is to get a notebook or file folder where you will keep copies of all your important personal and financial papers. My name is Bob, so I literally created a file folder I call “Bob’s Dead, Now What?” Seems harsh, but it gets my family’s attention, and it underscores the need to think about potential unpleasant occurrences while there is still time to plan. I keep the folder at my brother’s house, and it contains all the critical information: marriage and birth certificates, divorce decree, bank statements, copies of all my web accounts (utilities, credit cards, etc.), and most importantly, a copy of my will and powers of attorney for making decisions...."

Bob Bieri, CLU, CHFC, CASL, REBC, is a retired United States Marine, and currently he is the Senior Presenter for Navy Mutual, teaching financial literacy to active duty, reserve, and retired service members.