The Tony Steuer Podcast

Get Ready with Chris Hall: Why You Should Review Your Estate Plan

July 31, 2020 Tony Steuer/Chris Hall
The Tony Steuer Podcast
Get Ready with Chris Hall: Why You Should Review Your Estate Plan
Chapters
The Tony Steuer Podcast
Get Ready with Chris Hall: Why You Should Review Your Estate Plan
Jul 31, 2020
Tony Steuer/Chris Hall

Quote: Estate planning is not just for when you die, having a proper estate plan means that you’re going to be able to keep control over yourself and your person in the event that you’re incapacitated or that you die. 

In this episode of GET READY!, I spoke with Chris Hall, the founder of Estate Plan Navigator about the importance of having an estate plan. Chris shared about the benefits of an estate plan and why it’s important to periodically review your estate plan. We also discussed the importance of reviewing the beneficiaries on your life insurance policies and retirement plans.  

Bio: Chris Hall, Founder of Estate Plan Navigator. Chris is a former top producing insurance agent and financial advisor with Great Northern Financial. Currently on a mission to flip the numbers from 70% of adults in need of proper estate planning documents to 70% or more who have them in place. And, when time permits a true golf addict.

Connect with Chris Hall:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/chrisepnavigator/

EPNavigator home page: www.epnavigator.com


Show Notes Transcript

Quote: Estate planning is not just for when you die, having a proper estate plan means that you’re going to be able to keep control over yourself and your person in the event that you’re incapacitated or that you die. 

In this episode of GET READY!, I spoke with Chris Hall, the founder of Estate Plan Navigator about the importance of having an estate plan. Chris shared about the benefits of an estate plan and why it’s important to periodically review your estate plan. We also discussed the importance of reviewing the beneficiaries on your life insurance policies and retirement plans.  

Bio: Chris Hall, Founder of Estate Plan Navigator. Chris is a former top producing insurance agent and financial advisor with Great Northern Financial. Currently on a mission to flip the numbers from 70% of adults in need of proper estate planning documents to 70% or more who have them in place. And, when time permits a true golf addict.

Connect with Chris Hall:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/chrisepnavigator/

EPNavigator home page: www.epnavigator.com


Speaker 1:

Welcome to the get ready with Tony Stewart podcast. I'm pleased to be joined again today by Chris hall from IUPY navigator. Chris, thank you for joining me. How are you today? I'm doing

Speaker 2:

Great. Tony, how are you? I'm doing

Speaker 1:

Great. Thank you really excited to have you back. I'm glad to be here. Fantastic. So today, Chris and I will be talking about the get ready financial calendar action item, or for viewing your beneficiaries and estate plan. Chris is a perfect person to talk about this. Chris hall is the founder of state plan navigator. Uh, Chris is a former top producing insurance agent and financial advisor with great more than financial. Chris is currently on a mission to flip the numbers from 70% of adults in need of proper estate planning documents to 70% or more who have them in place. And when time permits , uh, playing golf, Chris, are you able to get out and play me golf right now?

Speaker 2:

Uh, we've got to do challenges right now. We're three COVID is really hot in Florida and not much time when you're running a business, but , uh , when I can, yes, I do. I still enjoy it.

Speaker 1:

Fantastic. Um, so do you want to tell us a little bit about what you do?

Speaker 2:

Sure. Um, so with the state plan navigator came to be really cause , you know, as a former advisor and for as long as I can remember, you know, advisors always have a challenge and uh, helping their clients get estate planning done. Um, and there's all kinds of hurdles, whether it's the cost , uh, the myths that sort of hold people up from getting it done , um, CA you know, complexity, whatever it might be. Um, there's, there's been this challenge around the state planning. And so at a state plan navigator , uh, we've we provide advisors and FinTech solutions with a turnkey estate planning solution. It empowers them to take control of the estate planning process. Uh, the platform is paired up with a nationwide network of attorneys, and it's going to allow the advisor to complete a customer state plan with their client or prospect in real time. And they can do all that and still be compliant and stay away from the unauthorized practice of law issues because of the way we work with our attorneys.

Speaker 1:

Oh , fantastic. Yeah. It's such a great program. I didn't care to anybody listening to check it out, especially if you're an advisor . Um, so Chris, what are the main benefits of having an estate plan?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, that's a , it's a , it's actually, it sounds like such a simple question, but really , uh , one of the things that people need to be aware, it's a state planning is not just for when you die. Um , having a proper estate plan means you're going to be able to maintain control over yourself, your person and your estate in the event, you're incapacitated, or you die. Um, you're going to be able to ensure that your wishes are accurately carried out and your assets go to the beneficiaries. You want to have those assets. Um, one of the things that w when I bring up the whole idea of it's not for just when you die, there's this thing called living probate. And a lot of people don't realize that that's why you need a power of attorney for financial decisions or healthcare decisions. Because if you don't put someone in charge of making those decisions for you, then your family's going to be likely find themselves in court and may, or the court may or may not appoint the person you'd like to be taken care of you in that position. So you want to go ahead and get these things in place ahead of time. So it's not just for when you die.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. And I think that's such an important point , um, is that people think about estate planning as, you know, a death thing. And it's really so much more than that. So that's, that's really powerful. And, and it's good to know that AP navigator takes that into account as a major component. Um, so, you know, here's the next question? Why is it important to keep your estate planning up-to-date as your life changes?

Speaker 2:

Well, we're all particularly aware right now in , in the world that you never know what's around the corner with this whole COVID 19 thing, but anything, I mean, you're driving down the road , uh, whether it's the Bay area or here in the Tampa Bay area , uh, we don't like to look at it, but you're , you S you see horrible accidents all the time, but what I'm getting at is we don't know what's around the corner for us. So , uh, it's really important to keep your plan up to date , uh, as much as we'd like to think we're in control or not. Um, and so you just, if you're not up to date , you're going to leave a much larger challenge , uh, behind for your family again. And that's the whole point is we don't want to leave a mess for anybody. And it's really simple to get the, keep it in order.

Speaker 1:

Fantastic. Yeah. Great points , things change, and there's a reason why they're called accidents. If we could plan on them, you know , that would make things a lot different. Definitely. So, you know, with that in mind, how often do you suggest people review an estate plan?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I, you know, I think as an agent , an agent or an advisor, I'm a former advisor is , you know, Tony. Um, but I think , uh , it's a conversation you should be having with your clients at a minimum every year. Um, and it may be a very discussion if you're doing it every year. It may be as simple as confirming that nothing really has changed, but it tells your client or your prospect that you care that you're looking out for them. Um, that said, I think beyond that kind of annual conversation , um, laws don't tend to change very quickly around estate planning. So as far as legal changes, not, you can go years without needing to make any changes due to law or changes in the law. Um, but I think it's a good idea to have a deep dive every, maybe three to five years , uh, and , and make sure everything's there and doing what you want it to do. And you, as an insurance professional, Tony, you know, I mean, you got to review those beneficiaries on a regular basis and know what's going on.

Speaker 1:

Definitely. Well, and that's actually, my next question is , um, why should you review the beneficiaries on your life insurance policies and retirement plans?

Speaker 2:

Well, we, yeah, this is kind of a , you know, it's very similar to the earlier question about, we don't know what what's around the corner and what's up, but I think, you know, life goes fast and , um, you know, you may have put beneficiaries in place years ago that ND it's a , there's a good chance. Something's different now. So we should be looking at those on a regular basis as well. And you may have some to add there, Tony, just how you deal with your clients and people around reviewing , um, beneficiaries. But, you know , you got to keep, keep on top of those.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. And , and part of what I'm doing with the get ready financial calendar is I'm urging people to do it once a year because, you know, while every three to five years, you, and I know that that's a great timeframe is I , I think that's partially where as a financial services industry, we've gotten a little bit off track is that I think having people do it at the same time every year makes it a little bit more ingrained , um, is because , you know, as an insurance agent, I don't know when my clients have changes, unless they practically tell me or I reach out to them. So I think that's a great point is that you have to do it , um , every so often on a regular basis. Yeah. So as we're talking about that, what are some of the issues that people should look for when they're reviewing their estate plans in beneficiary designations? Yeah .

Speaker 2:

Yeah . That's a great question. Because a lot of people, don't, you come sit down with the advisor, whoever it might be, and , and you say nothing's changed, but that's because you don't know what you're looking for. So great point , um, you know, right out the gate, first thing I would say is to have a look at your powers of attorney , uh , point your , uh, this was happened in my family. We are , there's five kids and we started to spread out around the country. And so my mother's power of attorney had , uh , me as the agent for her health care and my sister second, well, we both moved thousands of miles away. So , uh, that probably isn't the best person. So absolutely look at your powers of attorney, make sure that the people you want in charge of your finances or your healthcare decisions are indeed the ones that are not only ready and willing, but they're , uh, geographically close enough to actually do it and can do it. Um, and then certainly there's a lot of other life, major life events, like a new marriage or divorce on the other side. Um, did you name guardians for minor children and now , um, yeah, you've had a falling out with that former great friend or whatever it might be, check guardianship issues , um, hard, their new children. Did you have, did you have children or grand babies or things like that? Obviously. Bennett , do you want to change a beneficiary? It would be a big one. Um, are you a blended family? Have you become a blended family? There's some very specific things you need to do around estate planning if you're a blended family. Um, last couple of things. I , I, I jotted down a couple of notes cause I'd had a feeling that question was coming Tony, but what if a beneficiary pre-deceased you? Yeah , that's a great one. Yeah. I mean, it doesn't happen often. I hope it doesn't happen to you , the parents out there, but , uh , it does. So what we want to address that and last, and this actually is the number one trigger of a little bit more complex estate for us is if there's a special need someone who's a beneficiary receiving state or federal aid for a disability, we want to do make sure we do the right thing there so that we don't jeopardize that aid. That's going to that beneficiary. We want to make sure that we don't put them in a position where they lose that, that help, that they're getting. So those are probably the biggies that people want to pay attention to when they're reviewing their estate plans. And that's one of the things we do with our people is we try and stay on top of that.

Speaker 1:

Well, great. [inaudible] that's my next question. We're we're, we're doing great here. We're leading from one question right to the next is , um, how, how does EAP navigator help keep an estate plan up to date? How do you help your clients do these things ?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I , um , a couple of different ways, Tony , um, obviously we have a network of attorneys throughout the country and that we have attorneys in each state and part of their job is to make sure we're on top of legal changes in that state. Um, and so from a , from the standpoint of the language that's in the customer or the client's document, we watched that on and we will update on a regular basis. A good example of that is , um, the secure act, this went into effect this January, some changes around , uh , how we treat qualified accounts. Um, and so we were right on top of that. We made the adjustments and then we, if, if anybody needed to have their plan updated, we take care of that for them. The other thing we do is we send out an annual checklist or reminder for the clients and do certain things , uh, so that , uh, it kind of helps them stay on top of these things and keep their , um, keep their estate plan up to date.

Speaker 1:

Fantastic. I think that's an important point is so often, and especially, you know, you know, this coming from the insurance businesses , people do these things and then they think they're done with them, right ? When, so many of these things are living documents are living surfaces. That's great to hear you guys are doing that.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. And if I could add one more thing to that as they are living, but I've found over the years and spend more than I want to say now that you know, 20 plus years , um, there's a big myth out there that once they put their estate plan in place that it's going to be expensive or complicated or both to , to keep it up to date, it really isn't. And as you know, Tony with our platform , uh, it's , it's very simple to keep up to date making changes as simple it's inexpensive amendments currently constitute 150 bucks. So , uh , there's the idea that once you have your plan in place, it's going to somehow tie your hands and make life day-to-day life more complex. I want to make sure people understand that's not the case. Once it's in place, life goes on as normal and maintenance is actually pretty darn easy.

Speaker 1:

Well , that's great. That's great. So , um, Chris, what , what's your number one tip on being financially prepared?

Speaker 2:

Yeah. You , you did share that question with me early and I knew it was a covenant, you know, I'm just going to go with the very first thought I had on that. Uh, and it it's, it's past it. Maybe it's a little bit , uh, what do you call it when I'm not driving? I don't want to make it about me, but, or me by far is save your money because I was horrible saver as a, as a young person. Uh, I think I've gotten much, much better at it, but boy, once you can create that habit, it makes a huge difference. And the S and in addition to that, you people really need to take advantages of service and the knowledge of others, like your get ready program and take advantage of those, put those in place. Because like you said earlier is your program is going to have people doing this on a regular basis and keeping their financial house in order on a regular basis. And that's going to give people a real peace of knowing that that's all in place and it creates the habit and that's all of them. So yeah,

Speaker 1:

No, that , that's a great tip. And I think that's where it all starts, because if you're not saving anything, you're not going to have anything to really do estate planning about or insurance policies or retirement plan . So you have to, as with anything, you have to start with the fundamentals right before you can get to the big stuff.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. I mean, for some people it's interesting there, we know we hear , I watch our families or our own , uh, uh, children grow up. Sometimes when you see the personality differences, this one's a saver, this one's a spender. Well, I was that spender that you become a saver , uh, and it, it, it's not easy, but it really it's a , it's a life-changer once you get there

Speaker 1:

A hundred percent, a hundred percent agree. That's a great tip. So Chris, where can people learn more about you and EAP navigator? And this will be in the show notes as well.

Speaker 2:

Sure. No problem. Uh, pretty simple. It's just EAP navigator.com. Um, and if you , um, you can see us there when you land on that website. If you have , if you're a financial advisor insurance agent, there's a separate button up top to hit that says advisors, and that'll take you to a whole new section , uh , but there's lots of great content there and you can check us [email protected] and my, or my profile on LinkedIn.

Speaker 1:

Fantastic. Fantastic, Chris. Well, thank you so much again for , uh , joining us again on the get ready podcast.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely great to be with you, Toni as always. It's always fun.

Speaker 1:

Definitely. Well, have a good day. All right . Uh , thank you everybody for tuning into the, get ready with Tony Stewart podcast. Uh , please remember to subscribe until next time.