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By Jason Carrozza

Hi Everyone,

Happy Wednesday!!! This week we’re going to talk about shaping up in the New Year.

I’ve had a bunch of people ask me what are some quick things that they should do in the New Year to make sure their affairs are in order. Well, here are my top three:

  1. Update your beneficiary designations: We’ve talked about this before but it’s SO IMPORTANT and it’s something that’s so simple to do in the New Year. Please be especially cognizant of your beneficiary designations if you’ve recently married, had a child, or are going through divorce. Please also contact me if you’re considering designating a person with special needs as a beneficiary. You don’t want to deprive somebody of their government benefits simply because they inherited some money. There are planning tools you can utilize to prevent this from happening.
  2. Plan for the disposition of your digital assets. All of us whether we realize it or not have a completely separate digital life. These digital lives can be especially important when you’re thinking about sites such as Shutterfly or Facebook. Make an inventory of all of your digital assets and the passwords associated with each account and put it in a place where a loved one knows how to access it. Digital Access has become so important that many states are passing legislation permitting legal right for your executor, a/k/a personal representative in Massachusetts, to access your social media and other digital accounts.
  3. Set up an appointment with an estate planning attorney: If it has been a few years since you’ve updated your estate plan or have yet to start the process, the time is now to get your affairs in order. All of my clients receive a free estate plan review every three years. Why? Because life changes and your current estate plan should reflect your families current needs. Encourage your friends to either set-up an initial appointment or review what they already have in place. This is particularly important if you’ve recently experienced a significant change in life circumstances.

Complete these three things you’re already starting off 2014 in pretty good shape!

Until next time.

Wishing you and your family a safe journey,

About the Author
Jason M. Carrozza is a partner and founder of Family Legal Partners, P.C., previously owning Carrozza Law Office, P.C., which focused on estate planning, probate administration, and business formation. He was recognized as a Massachusetts Rising Star by New England Super Lawyers and Boston Magazine in 2014, 2015, and 2016, an honor given to no more than 5% of attorneys in the state. Graduating magna cum laude from New England Law and ranked 3rd in his class, Jason completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Tampa. He gained experience in civil litigation, divorce, corporate, and insurance defense law firms before opening his practice in 2004. Jason is admitted to practice before the Massachusetts Courts, is a trained family law mediator, and a member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation. He has volunteered for pro bono panels with Senior Partners For Justice, South Middlesex Legal Services, and the New Center for Legal Advocacy. Dedicated to his community, he has served in various leadership roles including vice president of the Bellingham Business Association and Master of Excelsior Lodge of Massachusetts Freemasons. He teaches Estate Planning Basics at the Tri County Continuing Adult Education program and speaks at estate planning seminars throughout the year. An avid baseball fan and history enthusiast, Jason enjoys outdoor activities and spending time with his family. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife, Katrina, and their children, Zachary and Madelyn.