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Major Nevada estate planning mistake easily avoided

Throughout one's lifetime, a variety of opportunities arise in which a beneficiary is named. Insurance policies, bank accounts and even retirement accounts all typically require beneficiary information. As a Nevada resident goes through the estate planning process, reviewing and updating these documents may be necessary.

Bank accounts and retirement accounts are typically established in early adulthood. Over time, the individual may get married, divorced, have children or go through other life-changing events. Many times, the need to review beneficiary information on these previously opened accounts is forgotten. When this happens and beneficiaries named on these forms differ from those named in the estate plan, things can be confusing. It is possible that the final wishes of the individual may not be honored because these forms were not updated.

Additionally, when one begins a new job, there is usually a substantial amount of paperwork to be completed. Part of this paperwork typically deals with benefits to which the employee is entitled. These benefits may include life insurance and retirement accounts that the employer sponsors. In this case, beneficiaries for these accounts and policies must be named. As life-changing events occur, it is often necessary to change the named beneficiary here also.

Many Nevada residents recognize the need for estate planning. This allows the individual to specify how assets are to be distributed upon his or her death. To eliminate confusion and ensure that this happens, it is also necessary to recognize the need to review and update named beneficiaries. It would likely be a good idea to periodically review the estate plan and beneficiaries named on financial documents.

Source:, Don't make the No. 1 estate-planning goof, Harper Willis, Jan. 23, 2014

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