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Planning for Special Circumstances

Tips for Designating IRA Beneficiaries

by Rania Combs

Wendy S. Goffe wrote a great guest article on Forbes.com last week that offered tips to avoid problems that can result from incomplete or inaccurate IRA beneficiary designations. Below are her recommendations

  1. Name a primary beneficiary (or beneficiaries).
  2. Name an alternate beneficiary in case the first one dies before you.
  3. Don’t name your estate as the beneficiary.
  4. Review these forms once a year to make sure they still carry out your wishes.
  5. Update your forms more often if there has been a change in your life circumstances, such as a birth, adoption, marriage, divorce or death.
  6. Each time you change the form, send it to the financial institution that holds the account, and ask them to acknowledge receipt.

You can read Wendy S. Goffe’s excellent article by clicking on the following link: The ABC’s of Beneficiary Designations.


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