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What information is required to finalize your estate plans?

Tennessee residents who are setting up their wills and other estate planning documents will need to gather specific information that's required to finalize their plans.

To help you gather the most relevant information needed for your estate planning endeavors, use the following as a pre-estate planning information checklist:

  1. The names, birth dates and contact information for everyone who will be named in the will
  2. The names, birth dates and contact information of all named guardians of children of the person planning the estate
  3. The source and amount of income the estate planner earns -- including dividends and interests from investments
  4. A listing of assets contained in retirement accounts or details associated with government benefits, pensions Keogh accounts and any business profit-sharing arrangements. This list should also include the beneficiaries associated with these accounts
  5. A listing of financial assets, including annuities, bank accounts and loaned money that is owed to the estate planner. This list should also include any beneficiaries associated with these accounts
  6. A listing of all debts, including auto loans, mortgages, credit cards, business loans and installment loans
  7. A listing of personal property of value, including its estimated value. This includes jewelry, real estate, collections, furniture, family heirlooms and more. This list should also include who the estate planner wishes to inherit this personal property
  8. A listing and appropriate description of any property that is jointly owned along with the name of the other owners
  9. Legal documents -- like prenuptial agreements, tax returns, divorce agreements and divorce decrees, marriage certificates, previous wills, property deeds and trust documents -- that might influence the estate plan
  10. A listing of safe deposit boxes, where they are, how to access them and what's inside them
  11. A list of digital assets, like accounts and passwords for bank accounts, social media accounts and digital information storage accounts

It may take some time to gather the above documentation, but once it's in order, the lion's share of the work will have been done. Next, what's required is the compilation and execution of estate planning documents like wills, trusts, powers of attorney and other documents.

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