How to Prepare for Death in the Digital Age
Preparing for death means preparing for the inevitable. While the idea of preparing for your own death might send shivers down your spine, it’s important to talk about what will happen when we die. Now that we’re living in the digital age, death is becoming an even more complicated topic. People now have to deal with issues such as online bank accounts, social media profiles, and confidential login credentials when a loved one passes away.
All of this comes on top of taking care of medical bills, making funeral arrangements, executing a will, and following a loved one’s final wishes. You can do your loved ones a favor by preparing for your death sooner rather than later. Take a look at all the practical ways to prepare for your eventual death.
Designate a Beneficiary
As previously mentioned, a loved one’s to-do list can quickly get out of control when someone passes away. As you begin to make arrangements for your death, start by designating someone that you trust as your beneficiary. This person will be in charge of doing most of the heavy lifting when you die. Be prepared to share all of your confidential login information, financial statements, and just about anything else with this person. If anything changes along the way, be sure to keep them in the loop.
With important issues, it’s always good to have a contingency, or Plan B if you like. This should also be the case when it comes to your final expenses and your final wishes. Step one should be to designate a contingent beneficiary in case your primary does not survive you.
We certainly do not suggest that you share your end-of-life information with your entire family, but it does make sense that more than one person has access to this important information.
Keep Your Login Credentials Organized
Most of our online profiles and accounts will continue on after we die. You can ask your beneficiary to manage, disable or delete most of those accounts after you die if you give them the corresponding login information. You can make things easier for everyone involved if you start compiling all of your information on a spreadsheet or a Google doc. This might include anything from your Facebook logins to a list of credit cards you carry.
You could even go one step further by having your financial spreadsheet saved on a flash drive and stored in a secure area with only your beneficiaries having access.
Memorializing your final wishes will also help to relieve stress on surviving loved ones. Take some time to think about what you’d like to happen after you die and leave specific instructions for your beneficiaries. Planning a funeral and all the related tasks that come with it can be stressful for family members and in some cases, lead to significant arguments among your survivors. This information can easily be found on websites like Pennyborn.com and can help you make sure you’ve addressed all the relevant topics.
Your financial and last wish information can be safely stored on a flash-drive and should be updated when things change.
Preplanning Your Funeral
In today’s economy, most people can pre-pan their funeral online while they’re preparing for death. There are several trusted websites that can guide you through the funeral planning process and even help you shop the services in your area. Many funeral homes will allow you to lock in the price of a pre-planned funeral which mitigates surprise cost increases and last minute services that may have been overlooked.
VeryWell.com is a great resource for pre-planning a funeral or cremation and will help you eliminate the stress of planning a funeral
Purchase Life Insurance
As the to-do list continues to grow for your loved ones when you die, life insurance becomes all the more necessary. Taking care of a loved one’s final wishes can easily turn into a full-time job, especially when you start talking about funeral plans. That means more time away from work.
Setting up a life insurance policy is a great way to leave something behind for your loved ones and preparing for death. That money can be used for your children’s education, the mortgage on the family house, any outstanding medical bills, funeral expenses and so much more. If your loved ones need to take time off work, they can use the death benefit to keep the lights on while they take care of your last wishes.
Once again, we recommend having more than one beneficiary and always take the time to update your designation if life events require it.