SLFCU Can Help You Put Your Financial Affairs in Order
Preparing your finances so others may assist you if necessary can be an important step in making sure your finances are handled the way you want. Some people choose to designate one or more individuals – perhaps a spouse, child, or other loved one – to act on their behalf. Understanding the array of account options available to you at SLFCU will allow you to tailor your accounts to meet your needs. Here are some suggestions that can help provide peace of mind and clarity.
KEEP YOUR FINANCIAL AFFAIRS ORGANIZED.
Consider collecting important documents, such as your will and any trust agreements and amendments, and creating a list of where and how your assets are held. A checklist is available at www.caregiverslibrary.org. Gathering this information can make handling your affairs easier for you now and possibly avoid headaches for you and your loved ones later. As with any sensitive information, be sure to keep this information secure.
REVIEW INDIVIDUALS ASSOCIATED WITH YOUR ACCOUNTS.
It is prudent to periodically review who, if anyone beyond yourself, is entitled or authorized to access your account(s). Different types of roles or ownership can have different legal and tax implications, and you may want to consult with an estate planner, attorney, or tax advisor to structure your affairs to best meet your goals.
Here are some of the ways additional individuals may be associated with a member’s SLFCU account(s):
- All joint owners on an account are owners of the funds in the account, and the funds are payable to any owner on request – for instance, in person or by debit card or transfer. This ownership interest continues after the death of any other joint owner(s). Generally, only the death or consent of a joint owner can remove that joint owner from an account.
- Payee(s) on death (POD) are individuals who will own the funds held in an account upon the death of the last account owner. Until that time, a payee on death has no right to the funds. Account owners can change the individual(s) designated as payee(s) on death.
- An attorney-in-fact (or agent) named under a valid power of attorney (a legal document) is an individual that the account holder has authorized to act on his behalf, while he is alive, at the times and in the ways specified in the power of attorney. These grants of authority can range from broad to narrow and are revocable.
- An agent is an individual who is authorized to act on the member’s behalf, while he is alive, with respect to his SLFCU account(s). The appointed agent must consent to serve in this capacity and provide SLFCU any required information, as well as sign applicable signature card(s). The member can revoke this agent’s authority by providing SLFCU notice of such revocation.
- A member may grant access to their safe deposit box to someone else by adding that person as an authorized signer and providing access to one of the safe deposit box keys issued to the member.
Some members may find it desirable to have the same individual associated with an account in multiple ways, for instance as an agent and a payee on death, and some members may not wish to utilize any of these associations. Circumstances can change, so consider confirming that any individuals you have authorized to act for you continue to be willing and able to perform those duties.
While SLFCU cannot provide legal or tax advice, we can help you review your SLFCU accounts and better understand the powers and limits of different account associations. Call 505.293.0500 or 800.947.5328, or visit any branch to speak with a financial service representative.
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