This morning Benefits Coordinator Lauralyn Walsh sent out an email to the membership to remind us all of how very important it is to name beneficiaries and contingent beneficiaries when we enroll in a retirement plan, annuity plan or insurance policy. Once you have selected your beneficiaries make sure that the forms are kept with all your important documents.
While beneficiary designations are not required, they are a very smart step to make for the future of your loved ones. Neglecting to name a specific person (or persons) or by entering “estate” as your beneficiary could result in your assets passing through a lengthy probate process upon your death, leaving your heirs without the ability to receive the funds when they may need them most. Furthermore, if no beneficiary is named, the estate may be forced to immediately pay income tax on the funds, often at an unfavorable tax rate.
Another common mistake people make is leaving unintended beneficiaries on retirement plans, annuities or life insurance policies. Any time you experience a life event, such as a marriage, death, divorce, birth or adoption, you should review both the primary and contingent beneficiaries on your policies and investments. Outdated beneficiary choices could result in unintended heirs and/or adverse tax consequences, especially on retirement funds.
Take the time this week to download the appropriate forms:
Health and Welfare Fund Beneficiary Designation (link to PDF)
Annuity Fund Beneficiary Designation (link to PDF)
Local 479 Basic Life Insurance Member Enrollment (link to PDF)
National Pension Fund Beneficiary Designation Form (linke to PDF)
Return your completed document(s) to: I.A.T.S.E. National Benefits Fund, 417 Fifth Avenue 3rd. Floor, New York, NY 10016
Please feel free to call the office to speak to Lauralyn if you have any questions!