Although it doesn't sound too romantic, marriage means paperwork. For example, if you are the wife, and take your husband's last name, you will need to change your name on your driver's license, passport, and social security card.
But both of you need to update your "next of kin" on your driver's license and social security cards. Also, update your emergency contact list at your work, gym, or club.
Most important, though, you will need to update legal documents, such as wills . Your wills determine how your estate will be distributed if you die. Through your wills, you can allocate assets pretty much as you see fit, provided your decisions do not conflict with the laws of your state. Without wills, however, these decisions will be made for you, without regard to your wishes. Though this is perhaps the last subject you want to address at this time, it is one of those "must do" issues that should not be put off. Meet with your attorney as soon as possible to update your wills so they reflect your new marital status.
Update the Beneficiary Designations
Delaying this action could have lead to painful financial consequences for your spouse if something happened to you. Not only might proceeds go to another party, which could leave your spouse effectively disinherited, but also court challenges could tie up your estate for years in costly litigation.
So, take the time to take care of these matters now. Note that these beneficiary designations cannot be changed by your will. Nor will they necessarily change automatically upon marriage.
Life insurance changes must be made by contacting the life insurance company and qualified retirement plan administrators directly. Your New York Life Insurance agent can help you change the beneficiary in your life insurance policy. He or she can obtain and walk you through the change-of-beneficiary forms, even for policies purchased from companies other than New York Life.
Remember also to change the names on any other insurance owned through work (life, health, disability), or any promotional insurance often offered by credit cards or banks.
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