Keep Money Safe as You Get Older

Elder exploitationYou’ve all heard the sad stories about the elderly being fleeced of their life savings, being conned, or losing their homes because they never got the bill for their real estate taxes.

This isn’t that uncommon, and research shows that even people who never suffer from dementia will lose some of their financial prowess as they get older. Unfortunately, they don’t necessarily lose confidence in their ability to manage their own finances. That can spell trouble.

US News explains in “8 Ways to Safeguard Your Financial Life as You Age,” that folks of just about any age should take action when they’re young to protect themselves from financial errors later in life. We’ll look at a few of these.

Automate transactions. Automate what you can, like utility and mortgage payments, as well as required distributions from retirement accounts. Go with direct deposit for your bank account. Create a list of what you have automated and tell your heirs where it is. Continue to review your statements.

Set up bank alerts. Your bank may provide you with the ability to get an email or text alert in the event that your balance drops below a certain level. You can do the same thing for large credit card purchases, and bill due dates.

Keep your estate planning documents up-to-date and organize your important papers. First make sure you let someone know where they’re located. Create a list of your assets, collect your important documents and passwords and put them in a secure place, like a home safe or fireproof security box. Also inform one of your children or trusted friend of their location in the event you become incapacitated.

Simplify your accounts. Consolidate your financial accounts and close accounts that have only small balances, which gives you less to manage. Get down to just one credit card, so you have just a single bill to pay.

Don’t make any hasty decisions. Sales people can be pushy, so don’t make any big financial moves, like moving investments or buying a new car, without first discussing it with a trusted friend or relative.

Think about sharing information. You may want a trusted friend or relative to help monitor your finances. You can have copies of your statements sent to them and authorize your financial advisor to discuss your finances and concerns with such a person. You can also give your passwords to those you trust. That way, they can monitor your financial affairs. Just be careful when it comes to sharing your information.

Reference: US News (October 26, 2016) “8 Ways to Safeguard Your Financial Life as You Age”


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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.
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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.