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Transfer of assets upon death
Old 10-16-2010, 03:25 PM   #1
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Transfer of assets upon death

My wife doesn't know the slightest thing about financial planning. I'm trying to write a "finance for dummies" paper for her to help her get through the financial side of things in case I get hit by a bus and I've come across some questions. Maybe someone can help me so I dont have to make a bunch of calls?

1. What are her options for handling my Roth IRA? For example, can she transfer the money into her Roth IRA for simplicity sake?

2. I assume that brokers such as E-Trade and Vanguard have paperwork to transfer taxable assets that are in my name to her name? I assume she wont have to sell anything to make the transfer?

3. Anyone have any experience with a 457b? Once I retire I can withdraw money as often as I like (at any age without penalty). Does she have options besides rolling this to an IRA and being stuck with the IRA withdrawal rules?
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Old 10-16-2010, 04:25 PM   #2
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There are books on the subject.

Contact your attorney to work out estate type details.

Taxes can be complicated... identify a good (and trusted) CPA.

IMO - if you invest in securities.... Stick with mutual funds that do not require as much attention and won't get hurt too much if they are not watched closely. If you are really worried... tell her to buy an annuity with a specific company for a certain amount of assets.
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Old 10-16-2010, 04:27 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by utrecht View Post
My wife doesn't know the slightest thing about financial planning. I'm trying to write a "finance for dummies" paper for her to help her get through the financial side of things in case I get hit by a bus and I've come across some questions. Maybe someone can help me so I dont have to make a bunch of calls?

1. What are her options for handling my Roth IRA? For example, can she transfer the money into her Roth IRA for simplicity sake?

2. I assume that brokers such as E-Trade and Vanguard have paperwork to transfer taxable assets that are in my name to her name? I assume she wont have to sell anything to make the transfer?

3. Anyone have any experience with a 457b? Once I retire I can withdraw money as often as I like (at any age without penalty). Does she have options besides rolling this to an IRA and being stuck with the IRA withdrawal rules?
I don't know anything about #3, but numbers 1&2 can and probably should be handled by a simple beneficiary designation. You mention two brokers. If that is where you have the accounts, go to their websites and make beneficiary and alternate or secondary beneficiary designations today.

Ha
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Old 10-16-2010, 04:53 PM   #4
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go to their websites and make beneficiary and alternate or secondary beneficiary designations today.

Ha
+1. Make sure she's the beneficiary.

The lawyer who wrote up our will said that the IRA/401-K goes to the beneficiary stated outside of the probate process - so it in effect happens immediately & without reference to your will. (check this with your own lawyer)
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Old 10-16-2010, 07:17 PM   #5
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Here's an article about Roth IRA inheritance: Inherited Roth IRA

Spouse can treat as it as their own with all the associated rules about
when you can withdraw w/o tax and/or penalty. It's a bit scary to think about
what they might do.........do you know all the rules about when you can withdraw
after a Roth conversion (if that applies)? how would they know.

Do you have TIRAs? Would they know about RMDs? Hopefully the institutions
would remind them. Here, it's a bit scary to think about what they might not do.

Your goal is a noble one.....and potentially very useful. I commend you for thinking about it. Maybe one part , since it is likely that not everything will be thought of , would be where to get advice for the mystery stuff that is sure to surface. Maybe you'll inspire others, including me, to do the same.
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