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Blog: Minimizing Financial Clutter

If you've been following the "52 Weeks to Financial Organization" series, you will have already completed your Un-Balance Sheet a list of everything you own (your assets) and everything you owe (your liabilities). (If you missed this step, go to http://www.onlineorganizing.com/BlogEntry.asp?id=2213.)  You will have already listed your life insurance policies in the Assets column of your Un-Balance Sheet.
But did you know that you might have additional life insurance policies for which you don't actually write a check every year?
In the event of your death, your next-of-kin or personal representative will need to know about these "hidden" life insurance policies, as well.  So you need to take some time this week to hunt for them and add them to your Un-Balance Sheet.
Where to Look for Hidden Life Insurance
Your Employer
Your employer may pay for a life insurance policy for you.  Check your employee benefits handbook, or contact your human resources department.
Unions, Trade Associations, Membership Organizations
A life insurance policy may be one of the benefits of your membership.  Check your membership documents, or call the organization's headquarters.
Credit Cards and Other Lending Institutions
Your agreement with your lender might include a life insurance policy that pays your outstanding debt in full in the event of your death.  Check your loan or line of credit documents, or call your lender to find out.  This could be a very valuable, but potentially overlooked benefit to your heirs.  Additionally, your credit card company may offer accidental death benefits if you die while traveling in an airplane or train accident and you purchased your tickets with your credit card.
What to Record
For each insurance policy, record the following information in the Assets column of your Un-Balance Sheet:
Name of Insurer
Policy # or Credit Card/Loan Account #
Contact Phone Number
Name of Contact Person
Date Policy was Issued
Type of Policy
Amount of Death Benefit
Location of Policy

posted on: 5/17/2009 11:30:00 AM by Katherine Trezise
category: Finances

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Minimizing Financial Clutter

by Katherine Trezise

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About Katherine:

Katherine Trezise is president of Absolutely Organized, based in Baltimore, MD. She is president-elect of the National Study Group on Chronic Disorganization. Katherine holds a masters degree in business administration, is a Certified Professional Organizer® and a Certified Professional Organizer in Chronic Disorganization®. Absolutely Organized specializes in helping people organize their homes, paperwork and financial records to make room in their lives for the things, people and activities that are most important to them.

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