It never occurs to most people that they won't last forever. Death is the ultimate reality of life but very few people seem to realize it. It is important that you understand the inevitability of death and prepare in advance for it. You may have bought life insurance and invested in various other products/ventures. But how easily can your family get all that money if you happen to die? More importantly, will they? There are a few things we all must do well in time to secure our family's financial future.
Inventorize: You must make an inventory list of all your possessions. This list should hold all items under two headings, “Physical”, and “Non-Physical”. Everything you/your family own should be listed somewhere on this list. All your investments and savings can come under the Non-Physical items.
Debit/Credit: You should have a list of all the credit cards and debit cards that everyone in your family owns. This list should be regularly updated and the debt/credit balance should be mentioned against each card. This list should also have the numbers to call in case of theft of cards.
Lawyer & Will: Have a lawyer draw up your will. Give a copy of this will to your lawyer and one to your spouse. Also give them each a copy of all your assets. Remember to change the will as and when you feel the need to make changes.
Nominees: All your bank accounts and investment vehicles should have your next of kin nominated. In the case of your death, your family will have a hard time proving entitlement to your hard earned money if you do not ensure proper nomination.
Inform Your Family: It is most important to inform your family/children/spouse of all your assets and investments. It has been seen that sometimes families never get the investments of a deceased family member because they do not know about such investments. Don't let that happen to you.
Joint accounts: It is best to have all your bank accounts, real estate holdings etc jointly. If there are two names on the bank account on on a property you own, it is much easier to ensure your family's financial future in case of your death.
Insure: Getting health insurance for everyone in your family is very important. Even if you fall prey to a sickness, at least your insurance provider will cover the costs. Money can definitely not make up for the loss of a dear one. But at least it can make life easier.
Please do all the things mentioned above in order to ensure that your family does not have to run from pillar to post in order to get what you have left for them.