Many of our readers in the Quad Cities who are familiar with previous posts here know how important it is to have a comprehensive estate plan. No matter their financial or family situation, almost anyone can benefit from having a plan in place for the distribution of assets after their death, naming guardians for minor children and having documents in place that name another person to make crucial decisions in the event of incapacitation. But, once one has an estate plan in place, where do they keep these important documents?
A recent article noted that there are a number of possibilities. For starters, even in this day of digital documents and storage, it is just as important to have a hardcopy of your estate planning documents. After all, signatures must be affixed to the documents anyways, so keep those originals. For the most part, people chose to have their estate planning attorney hold on to the original estate planning documents, while they keep copies. But, there are other options.
The recent article noted that some people prefer to keep these important documents in a safe deposit box, but that may complicate things when someone must have the authority to access the box to get to the documents. A better option may just be a fireproof safe at home. And, of course, have multiple copies of the documents.
Even though storing estate planning documents as the important document they are, do not forget that the words in the plan are not “set in stone.” As the recent article mentioned, it is crucial to update an estate plan as life changes occur.