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Sharing Your Personal Financial Information – All In The Family in Virginia


Failure to communicateT
o ensure that your heirs have easy access to your financial life, leave them a road map.

This is something my clients hear me saying all the time. In practice we do everyting we can to assist our clients so that their 'road map' remains current as well. On the other hand, we have also assisted families with in their 'forensic accounting' efforts because whatever plan there might hae been was a mystery.  We call this a “failure to communicate.”

If you have put your financial and estate house in order, but don't keep it up-to-date or your loved ones know nothing about it, likely you have created a plan that won't work as it was intented. 

The importance of communication was the subject of a recent Kiplinger article titled “Key Financial Documents to Share With Your Heirs.” Experts agree that it is important to keep your heirs informed at each stage of your financial and estate planning process. In fact, even better would be to plan with them, depending on their abilities or needs.

At a minimum, you need to have a plan in place so your heirs can take action when the time comes. For example, will they be able to find important documentation so that they can step into your shoes and take care of business as you would? So what do your heirs need to know?

According to the original article, heirs should have access to, or at least access to a way to access, all
of your financial accounts, from banks to investments to insurance policies.  They also need access to your estate plans themselves. This includes legal documents such as your will and trust. Do not forget to give them copies of your advanced medical directives or power of attorney forms, too.

Finally, to the extent any professionals have helped craft your plans, then your family should know who they are and how to seek their advice again. Essentially, ensure that your loved ones can find your important documents, records and advisors or your planning may fail.

You can learn more about this topic as well as other strategies on our website under the tab entitled: estate planning in Virginia.  Be sure you also sign up for our complimentary e-newsletter so that you may be informed of all the latest issues that could affect you, your loved ones and your estate planning.

Reference: Kiplinger (November 2013) “Key Financial Documents to Share With Your Heirs

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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.