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To-Do or Not To Do? When To Use Paid On Death And/or Transfer On Death Accounts.

I can’t tell you how often I ask my clients and they don’t remember when the last time was, they checked their beneficiary designations on their assets or their “Transfer On Death” and “Paid On Death” designations on the bank accounts and their brokerage accounts.  It is just not a common thing to do.  And if you have serval accounts, it is easy to lose count. A lot of people presume that such designations are a good way to avoid probate.  

It is not, however, a good plan.  It does nothing to protect the beneficiaries from their creditors, it might leave your estate without the ability to pay your last taxes, or did you unintentionally leave out any beneficiary, or did this cause an unequal distribution.  Do not count on your beneficiary to make your wrong, right, even if they want to.  Because if they try to do it right and redistribute the excess, they have now given a gift and it could be subject to gift taxes or filing of a gift tax return.  Even a simple will is much more comprehensive and can achieve your final goals through all your accounts and assets.

Give us a call today, tel: (516-570-4016) so we can guide you through it.