Watch CBS News

Estate Planning Is Essential

BOSTON (CBS) - We are on a roll here with getting the financial stuff in order.

Estate planning is next. If you have done estate planning, when did you do it?  If you have not done any, and about half of our listeners haven't, Massachusetts has some laws that will do it for you.

Consider starting with a simple plan. I hear such excuses as "we don't have enough money to warrant a will."  "We own everything jointly so we don't need a will."

Do you have kids? Who would you want to care for your kids? Do you have stuff you want to go to friends or family?

An estate plan helps to distribute your assets upon your death and it can do more. If you have kids, you can name a guardian who will take care of your children if both you and your spouse should die. All you may need is a simple will, but if your life and finances are complicated then your estate planning should also be complicated.

And if you did do some estate planning a long time ago, find those documents and review them. These documents are very important but should not be kept in a safety deposit box. If something should happen, you and your family will want access to them. Good to leave a copy with your attorney but better to have them accessible.

Documents you will need while you are alive are your Power of Attorney and Health Care Proxy. These should be kept at home. The people named in those documents as your proxy should have copies as well.

If you have set up a Living Trust, you want that document readily available and again accessible to the person you have named as your alternate trustee.

As for your will, your executor should know where your will is stored and have access to it. Along with any instructions such as funeral arrangements.


You can hear Dee Lee's expert financial advice on WBZ NewsRadio 1030 each weekday at 1:55 p.m., 3:55 p.m., and 7:55 p.m.

Subscribe to Dee's Money Matters newsletter here.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.