In our weekly blog posts, we frequently discuss the importance of a well-designed estate plan. Most of us understand the importance of having a basic estate plan but don’t realize that the basic documents within it often lack crucial details and certain clarity needed to enable it to do its job, such as advanced medical directives. The more all-encompassing your plan, the more ease your loved ones will have when the time comes. In this week’s deep dive, we’ll begin to address additional information you should be familiar with.

Pictured: Wealth Advisors Stephanie Vokral, CFP®, CDFA®, AIF® (Left) and Erin Eiras, CPFA®, CEPA® (Right)


Whether you’re forty-five, twenty-five, or one hundred and five, you should have an emergency contact card or list. It should be up to date both in print and electronically, and it should be readily available to everyone staying in your home and to a few close friends and family members for their reference in the event of an emergency. Lastly, it should be printed and kept with you at all times in case of an accident.

Download this document, courtesy of the Red Cross, to create your own here.

In addition to an emergency contact card or list, you should also have a financial checklist – regardless of your age!

While your will covers everything in regard to how to split up your assets, it doesn’t get into the big idea of your financial picture. By giving your executor of all the small, sometimes even seemingly irrelevant details, you’ll make their job a lot easier. Some of the most important details are in regard to your accounts, and knowing exactly where each account is located and who the contact person is for each. Be sure to inform any financial professionals that you work with about who your executor is in advance to make everything run smoother.

If someone ever needs to take over your financial matters at some point, this document would be very helpful for them.  Store this document in a safe place and let the person that’s going to be in charge know where it is located when that critical time comes.

Basics (Checking/Savings/Money Market/CDs) & Investments (Brokerage and Retirement Accounts)

Have the locations of the above documents noted, and for each account, write down the name of the financial institution, a contact name, a contact phone number, and a Yes or No for whether they are aware of the person you’ve named to handle your financial matters. For each account, list the account name/registration, account number, and any direct deposits, bill payments, or recurring transfers that are associated with it. Be sure to make multiple records, one for each account.

Pensions, Social Security, and Annuity Information

Note whether or not you have any pension income, and if so, list the pension name, contact name, contact phone number, email, and any additional information. If there’s Social Security income, list the Social Security Number, the monthly net deposit, the annual gross amount, and deposit information. If you have any annuities, list their policy numbers, agent names, and contact numbers, and whether they’re annuitized, as well as payment details (method, frequency, amount, etc.)


If you have a CPA, list their information and whether you’ve indicated to them who you’ve named to handle your financial matters. If you use tax filing software, list the name of the program and your login ID and password.

Credit Cards

Take some time to type up (or hand-write, if you’re old fashioned) all of the information pertaining to any and all credit cards that you have. Include bullet points for each card name, cardholder(s), account number, expiration date, payment due date, payment information, whether there are automatic bill payments linked to the card, and any details regarding said payments, including name, payment date, amount, and frequency.

Loan Information

These should include any loans other than a mortgage, HELOC, or vehicle financing). Similar to the above, write down all of the information regarding the account numbers, names of financial institutions, contact names and phone numbers, and payment details.

Save the file to your hard drive (make sure to enable password protection in the document!) and print it out to keep handy. Stay tuned with InVestra throughout this month to learn more about different aspects of estate planning and what you can do to stay ahead.




Important Disclosures:

The information in this article is not intended as tax, legal, investment, or retirement advice or recommendations, and it may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any federal tax penalties. You are encouraged to seek guidance from an independent tax or legal professional. The content is derived from sources believed to be accurate. This material is for general information only and is not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. There is no assurance that the views or strategies discussed are suitable for all investors or will yield positive outcomes. Investing involves risks including possible loss of principal. This material was prepared by InVestra. Securities and advisory services are offered through LPL Financial (LPL), a registered investment advisor and broker-dealer (member FINRA/SIPC). Insurance products are offered through LPL or its licensed affiliates. To the extent, you are receiving investment advice from a separately registered independent investment advisor that is not an LPL Financial affiliate, please note LPL Financial makes no representation with respect to such entity.

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