Friday, September 15, 2006
How to be beneficent.
Windy City Blues mentioned the lack of beneficiary designations as a strike against online banks.

I actually found it much easier to set up a beneficiary for my online banks than my brick-and-mortar credit union. Being that I still have no dependents, I wanted to make any potential transfer as simple as possible, so I looked for places with an easy nomination process.

One of the things that really pleased me about EmigrantDirect's redesign was the ability to set up a beneficiary right from the main account page. I just provided the SSN, name, contact information, and relationship, and the form was stored with my account. If I ever choose to change it, I just have to select "change beneficiary" and repopulate the form.

VirtualBank isn't quite as straightforward, but still uncomplicated. VB uses a message center to keep up communication between you and your "personal" account representative. She told me that I simply had to send a message with my beneficiary's name and SSN and it would be stored with the account. So I did. (I do need to follow up to make sure it's been properly recorded.)

Of course, it doesn't do any good to nominate beneficiaries if they don't know about it. That's why I provided my aunt with a copy of my "life list," covering pretty much every asset and liability that I have, contact information for the companies involved, and the respective beneficiaries (if applicable). So in case I'm ever hit by a bus, they don't have to sort through my hideous filing system to figure out what to do next.



Blogger Tiredbuthappy said...

My beneficiaries are all in order. It became much more of a no-brainer now that I have a family of my own--before that I had my 3 syblings named on all my accounts.

But I'm still procrastinating making my spouse a list of all my accounts and balances. This is partly because I know he thinks it's silly that I have so many accounts, mostly opened for the sign-up bonuses. Every time I start to make that list, I start thinking about how much he would HATE having to chase down all those little $100 balances if I kicked the bucket.

Oh well. At least I wouldn't have to be around to hear him grouse about it. :)

Blogger HC said...

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Blogger HC said...


I have this image of your little accounts racing around like kittens, and your spouse trying to herd them.

I've thought about playing the bonus game, but I'm not much for herding cats either. I'd rather just pet them. [grin]

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