Helping You To Get Organized

DirectoryPeople typically choose to save too much rather than risk throwing out something important.

Although we offer a “Master Directory” form to all of our estate planning clients as a way to help them get organized and relieve some of the stress of hunting down paperwork for their agents, you may find it easy to design your own document using ours as a template.  In that way, you may be able to maintain this directory as an Excel spreadsheet or Word document. Whichever is easiest for you, if you keep it up-to-date, this can be an invaluable tool for your loved ones in the event you are unable to manage your assets for yourself. Here are the steps.

Step 1: Document key individuals. First, list all of the individuals and companies with whom you deal for your finances and estate planning business with their contact information.

Step 2: Document key assets. Most of this task is documenting your financial assets, such as retirement plan accounts, IRAs, brokerage accounts, bank accounts, and real estate holdings. If you see that you have quite a few accounts, this may be a good time to streamline by consolidating accounts to reduce financial clutter. You can also get some breaks on fees, free financial advice, or other perks. Also, if you have collectibles or other valuable financial assets, list those too. Documenting your financial assets can also help with your attorney's review of your estate planning documents. If you have major assets that are in your estate plan, you need to incorporate them also.

Step 3: Document key liabilities. This is the other side of the ledger—your household's key liabilities, like your mortgage and credit card debt.

Step 4: Keep the data safe. Now that you've created your master directory, protect it with a password. Most programs allow you to password-protect a file. And if you handwrite a physical document, save it in a locked file drawer or safe-deposit box.

Step 5: Let a trusted family member know. The last step in the process is to let a trusted loved one know that you've created this document, as well as where it's located and how to access it. Tell your spouse about the document and the person to whom you've given power of attorney for your financial matters and/or your executor.

Reference: Morningstar (April 18, 2016) "How to Create a Master Directory"


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We've been putting together as many resources as possible so that we can continue to help:

  • If you’re a current client with a signing appointment or a prospective client with a consultation and would prefer that meeting take place in your own home, we can accomplish that with a little bit of pre-planning on our part and with the addition of a laptop, smartphone, tablet or other computer in your home to facilitate this virtual meeting. For those of you that need to sign legal documents, that too can be accomplished with the use of a webcam (FaceTime etc.), so that we can witness and electronically notarize all of your important legal documents.
  • We launched the rollout of our on-demand webinar early so that new clients and our allied professionals can view the important component parts of ‘an estate plan that works’ at their convenience.  That is available on our website.
  • Live video workshops will be produced as quickly as possible and certainly ahead of our previous schedule; we will keep you posted as these events become available. Given the ‘boutique’ nature of the firm, we rarely have more than ten people in our office including team members at any one time. During this period of ‘social distancing,’ we promise to have no more than 8 people at any time.   This allows us to comply with the Governor’s directive to limit in-person gatherings.
  • The best way to communicate with us is still by phone during regular office hours of 8:30 to 5:00, Monday through Friday, or, you can email any of our team members (that is, their first name followed by @zarembalaw.com).  We will respond to these emails as quickly as possible.
  • Please continue to follow the directives of our local, state, and federal agencies. For your health and in consideration of our team who is assisting you, if you’ve scheduled an office appointment or planned to drop off paperwork and are experiencing a fever, dry cough, or shortness of breath, please contact your primary care doctor for guidance and then our office to reschedule.

Thank you, Walt and the Zaremba Team

Update to our Process

The unprecedented coronavirus pandemic has taken our entire country by surprise. We understand how difficult this time is for America’s businesses and families.  However, we believe it is vitally important that we make every effort possible to continue to offer solutions that avoid disrupting our important partnership with you, your family and friends.  As you know, estate planning is not something that should wait for a more convenient time, therefore the opportunity to address your important goals both during and after this crisis should not wait.  To that end, we have added the option of a ‘virtual consultation’ to our office process.  You will now have a choice of either meeting with us in our office or in the comfort of your own home.