A “Life File” consists of any documents or log in credentials that would be required to assist your executor or guardian in accessing and managing your health and financial affairs should you die or become incapacitated.
Everyone over the age of 18 should have an up-to-date “Life File” and provide the means for it to be accessed by a trusted friend or family member.
Step 1: Compile
- List of banking and investment accounts with account numbers, name and location of the institution and log in credentials
- Estate planning documents
- Life insurance policies
- Titles to assets (home, vehicles, boats, etc.)
- Medical information and advance directives
- Birth certificate and Social Security card
- List of liabilities (credit cards, student loans, personal loans, etc.)
- List of recurring subscriptions that will need to be modified/canceled.
Step 2: Safekeeping
Once you compile the “Life File” the next step is to ensure the contents are kept safe both physically and digitally. There are numerous online providers of digital security products. You will need to conduct research to determine which service meets your needs and budget. Safe deposit boxes are excellent options for keeping physical documents secure.
Step 3: Inform a Trusted Person
Select someone you trust with information on how to access the “Life File” when the time comes.
As part of our comprehensive estate planning services, we help clients create a “Life File” and implement a process to keep the contents safe but accessible when needed. For more information, contact Stouffer Legal at 443-470-3599 in the Greater Baltimore area.