Who gets the $$$ in your retirement accounts when you die? The answer may surprise you.

Editor

somd.com Editor
Staff member
PREMO Member
Patron
What do you mean his ex-wife gets his 401(k)?! The will says right here that I get it! :mad:

Your Last Will & Testament is the final word in specifying exactly who gets your stuff after you die, right? Nope, not quite. Retirement accounts all have the ability to have one or more beneficiaries attached to them. The beneficiary designation trumps your will every time, according to this estate planner.



Key Takeaways from the Video:
  • The beneficiary designation trumps your will every time, even if the will was created at a later date
  • Not a good idea to specify a minor as a beneficiary, can create a real mess
  • You can specify a Trust as the beneficiary. But, you must create the trust outside of this
  • Can't specify specific amounts in the beneficiary designation, only percentages
  • You can name your estate as the beneficiary, but this has negative income tax repercussions
A few more articles on this topic:





Life Insurance policies appear to be addressed in a similar manner:



IMPORTANT: This is not legal advice! Consult with an attorney or professional before making any decisions.
 
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Clem72

Well-Known Member
A friend of mine died and never updated his paperwork when he got remarried. Poor wife did not get his 401k.

Sounds like bullshite to me. Doesn't matter who you're signed beneficiary is, If you are married you cannot legally cut your spouse out of a 401k unless they explicitly agree. Not with a pre-existing beneficiary, not with a new beneficiary, not with a prenup.

A special rule applies to 401(k) plans and other "qualified plans" governed by federal law: Your spouse is entitled to inherit all the money in the account unless he or she signs a written waiver, consenting to your choice of another beneficiary. It's not enough just to name someone else on the beneficiary form that your employer gives you.
 

PeoplesElbow

Well-Known Member
Sounds like bullshite to me. Doesn't matter who you're signed beneficiary is, If you are married you cannot legally cut your spouse out of a 401k unless they explicitly agree. Not with a pre-existing beneficiary, not with a new beneficiary, not with a prenup.
Maybe it was the insurance
 

RoseRed

American Beauty
PREMO Member
Funny this came out today. I just double checked my beneficiaries yesterday. Sister will have a good nest egg in my demise.
 

frequentflier

happy to be living
My husband and I went to a retirement seminar Tuesday evening and have an appt with a financial advisor next week to make sure we have all of our ducks in a row. Our wills need to be upgraded as well. Neither of us have children and we always struggle with beneficiaries.
 
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