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Lost in the Shuffle

Life insurance policyIf you’re paying on a life insurance policy — or you’ve ever bought one — track it down and give your heirs complete information about it: Where the paperwork is, the policy number, the insurance company, the agent who sold it to you and all other relevant information.

Life insurance can be a powerful estate planning tool, but paying for it doesn’t necessarily guarantee your heirs will receive the benefit – not if the policy gets lost in the shuffle of life. Remember, your heirs may have to specifically approach the insurance company with their claim in order to receive any benefits. In fact, New York’s Attorney General’s office is investigating nine leading life insurers to see whether they have done enough to identify beneficiaries of life insurance policies. Do your heirs know the particulars of your life insurance, or where to find the paperwork? As recently explained in Reuters Wealth online, life insurance companies have an inherent business interest in not paying out death benefits – it’s just simple economics. You should have an inventory of your assets, and make that inventory available to your family. If you are paying on a life insurance policy, or you’ve ever bought one, track it down and give your heirs complete information about it, to include where the paperwork is now, the policy number, the insurance company, and the name and contact information of the agent who sold it to you.

Having identified this problem for you, hopefully you can appreciate why our law practice works with our clients to ‘fund’ their trusts; re-titling all assets to their trust so that nothing falls through the cracks. 

Reference: Reuters (July 5, 2011) “Life Insurance: Will Your Heirs Get What You’ve Paid For?

 

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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

Coronavirus/Covid-19
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.