Bob Carlson writes of two recent examples of the ramifications of not having current paperwork for retirement accounts in this article for Forbes. It is absolutely vital to make sure that these forms are not just filled out appropriately at account inception, but also updated as often as life requires. If both of these steps are not carried out properly and vigilantly, you could be putting your retirement assets at risk for unnecessary income tax or passing at your death to unintended beneficiaries.
Particularly if you have a corporate retirement plan, for example a 401(k), with a previous employer, you need to review your Beneficiary designation with that plan administrator. If appropriate, Asset Advisors can help roll a 401(k) into an IRA with your intended beneficiaries.
Also, very important to understand, your will does not control who receives your retirement assets. The Beneficiary Form on file with the IRA custodian controls who gets those assets at your death.
If you have not recently reviewed your current retirement beneficiaries, Primary and Contingent, Asset Advisors has the skill on staff to efficiently do this. As always, we are here to help make sure your objectives are carried out for your money.