MoneyWise Live | April 5, 2019

Don’t Disinherit Your Grandchildren with Mike Miller

Show Notes

They say you can’t take it with you … so are you sure the assets you’ve accumulated over your lifetime will go where you want them to after you die?  When it comes to naming beneficiaries, the devil’s in the details. 

If it’s been years since you’ve looked over retirement plan documents that name your beneficiaries, you can’t assume they’re still in order. Rob West welcomes money expert Mike Miller to find out what you need to know about designating beneficiaries. 

Our guest Mike Miller is Managing Director of the South Carolina office of Ronald Blue Trust. He’s also a certified financial planner and best of all, a Certified Kingdom Advisor.

Mike also blogs a lot on interesting topics— and a recent post is pretty eye-catching … “Don’t Disinherit Your Grandchildren.” You began that with a story about a Brooklyn man who got a very unpleasant surprise after his wife died.  Bruce Friedman was left destitute after his wife Anne died unexpectedly of a heart attack in 2005. They’d been married nearly 20 years. Mike relates the tale of how Bruce’s sister-in-law ended up with the entire account balance and he got nothing.

  • This story is about pension benefits but this is a problem with all sorts of retirement accounts.
  • How should you name your beneficiaries? It sounds like there’s more to it than just putting a name on a line.
  • So how do you accidentally "disinherited your grandchildren”?
  • Does naming beneficiaries or heirs in your will or in my living trust work?
  • If you want your will to direct the proceeds, you just name your estate as the beneficiary in your 401(k), right - no!
  • The bottom line is don’t trust your memory, verify that the beneficiary designations you have on file now will accomplish your wishes!

Next, Rob and Steve answer these questions at 800-525-7000 or via email at

  • If you're living paycheck to paycheck, is there a low-cost way to get a will written?
  • Are online or DIY wills and trusts OK?
  • If you're 68 and would like to insure your estate is in order, how does one find a Christian wise counsel in your area to help?
  • Is it OK to simply specify "estate" in the contingent beneficiary in a will?
  • Are legal fees to set up your trust, power of attorney and such tax deductible?
  • How can you go about tithing an inheritance?
  • If you already have a will in which you specify your two adult children but do not mention the grandchildren you now have, should you amend?
  • What happens when a will existed but wasn't recorded and there are now contests to it?
  • If you've been named the executor of your mother's will and relations with your sister are not ideal, what are some steps to take to to insure things go smoothly and correctly?
  • Now that you're retired and getting proceeds from your pension and 401(k) and you have extra money every month, should you consider increasing your giving to organizations other than your local church?
  • How does one vet secular charities?
  • What divorce papers should you save and how long should you keep them?
  • How long should you keep papers on paying off your mortgage?
  • Should you invest extra money you have each month into paying a interest free mortgage or into your retirement?
  • How do you go about adding a spouse to your house deed?

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