Posted on Oct 10, 2014
COL Vincent Stoneking
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This is prompted by a post by MAJ (Join to see) regarding talking about death...

The civilian world doesn't FORCE you to really think through long-term/terminal planning. There are no SRPs, birth month audits, etc. Moreover, the military makes you take care of some things (SGLI, Wills, POAs, etc), but not others (funeral preferences, long-term care facilities, etc.)

In the other post, one person mentioned putting together a packet or a checklist. As I've been doing some thinking along these lines (and discovered that my former spouse would get all of my civilian insurance!!! - fixed), I am interested in what the group thinks should be in the list.

The items that top my list right now are:
1. Funeral/burial preferences (this isn't something I want my spouse to have to try to figure out). It is worth noting that there are several funeral-related benefits available to veterans, including plots in national veterans' cemeteries and national parks cemeteries. But that's of no use if someone doesn't know whom to contact in the time leading up to, or immediately following, death.
2. Annual review of civilian insurance policies - coverage and beneficiaries. It is amazingly easy to forget details or think you made changes that you hadn't.
3. For civilians/reservists/retired SMs, long term disability coverage details. (as it turns out, I didn't restart mine after my deployment almost a decade ago. Luckily, I wasn't disabled....)
4. Review of "retirement" planning, goals, finances.

What would be in your checklist?
Posted in these groups: Responsibility logo ResponsibilityPlanning logo Planning
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Responses: 2
LTC Jason Strickland
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Definitely things we need to think about.
First and foremost for me is to minimize the burden on my children - financially, decisions, wishes, etc. Make it clear in your will - and then talk with your heirs!
You covered the rest pretty well, COL Vincent Stoneking!
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LTC James Smith
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Vincent your post is spot on. I have seen numerous SMs and Veterans wait to plan for long term/terminal planning. They get five years out from retirement to begin the process and reality sets in when they find out their best laid retirement plan comes up short. This also includes their terminal plan too. This is why I got into the financial planning business to help folks develop a plan that will cover these important financial areas.
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