We are at a great step friends! We are at the point in our 52-week Take Back Your Finances Challenge where we finally get to file away all of the legal and estate documents from the past few challenges that we have created.
It’s a GREAT feeling! It’s DONE, it’s OVER, it’s BEHIND US. That means no more dreading dealing with them because that’s what we have been doing the past few weeks. Estate planning is not a favorite of many, with the result that unfortunately too many have an unplanned estate, leaving a mess behind. Well, our readers will not be in those numbers because we hope we have guided you through the basics and DIY resources to get the job done quickly and effectively.
BUT…there is one final step in this section of our challenge…”Now what do you do with all of these legal documents?”
That’s what this week’s challenge entails – the proper storage and distribution of these documents.
Here’s our recommendations:
- Make and have at least 3 paper copies and a digital copy. You may need more paper copies (see below).
- Put the first copies/originals in a safe and secure location where all of your important papers are found such as a safe deposit box or a fire-proof safe at home. Neither of these are necessarily intended for immediate or frequent access. But you do need to provide access to someone other than yourself and they need to be aware of where to find these secured documents.
- Leave a second set of copies with your filed papers at home – especially your Living Will and Power of Attorney and Funeral Arrangements. The Last Will and Testament is often not immediately needed, but you can include it in your regular filing system if you are comfortable with this.
- The third set of copies need to be given to someone you trust outside of your home and family that does not have an interest in your estate. For us, this is our pastor.
- For more than 3 copies, you may want to give appropriate copies to the necessary parties. As an example, my parents also provided us with copies of their funeral arrangements, etc. So whomever you deem needs to have copies of any part of your estate documents, give them copies.
- Finally, if you have a lawyer, they should have copies too.
- For the digital version, you need to have a digital version stored in an online secure document storage spot, in this day and age of technology especially! There are MANY options and so we are going to re-direct you to PC mag that made a side-by-side comparison. Note that these are not your only options as each of these costs money. Having documents stored in a cloud or Dropbox could also work as a free/cheaper option and fine depending on how important encrypted security is to you regarding your estate documents.
Well, that’s a pretty simple task this week and one that will make the final steps in your estate. Creating these documents the past few weeks was a HUGE step, but not the last one until you have completed this week’s task.
One final thing…we also have a Facebook Group where you can engage in discussions, receive encouragement and talk to others that are participating in the challenges too for more ideas! Head to the Be Intentional with The Thrifty Couple Facebook Page HERE and ask to join us there! You can also invite friends and spouses too!
Disclaimer: We are not licensed financial planners nor are we attorneys. We are only a couple that have been just a hair-breadth away from bankruptcy and found our way out of debt with a goal to now help others. Please make sure to consider any advice given on our site and in this challenge as tips we have used ourselves; they may not work for everyone. If you have questions please make sure to contact a licensed professional.