Year-End Estate Planning Checklist

Year-End Estate Planning Checklist

With a new year just around the corner, now is the time to get your estate plan and finances ready for the new year!

Wondering where to start? Follow our simple Year-End Estate Planning Checklist to feel 100% ready for anything the coming year may bring.

End-of-the-Year Estate Planning Checklist

Has it been more than 5 years since you created or updated your estate plan? 

Has it been 3 years or more since you updated your schedule of assets (Schedule “A”)? 

Review the following estate plan documents to ensure they reflect your wishes. If you wish to make changes, contact our office to discuss these changes:

  • Revocable Living Trust (especially your trustees, beneficiaries, and guardianship for minor children)
  • Financial Power of Attorney
  • Advance Healthcare Directive

Do you wish to make monetary gifts this year? The annual gifting limit this year is $16,000 per recipient. Be sure to make these gifts before Dec. 31:

  • Educational and medical exclusion gifts
  • Charitable gifts
  • Funding 529 Plans
  • Funding Irrevocable Trusts

In 2022, an individual can gift a maximum of $12.06 million over their lifetime. Think you may exceed this amount?

Retirement & HSA Plans

  • Confirm employer-sponsored benefits
  • Fully fund 401K, 403B, or other employer-sponsored retirement plans before Dec. 31
  • Fund non-employer retirement plans (like traditional and Roth IRAs) before Dec. 31
  • Fund HSAs (health savings accounts) before Dec. 31
  • If you’re over the age of 72 (or 70½ before Jan. 1 of next year), check that required minimum distributions from pre-tax retirement plans have been taken

Review life insurance policies:

  • Ensure beneficiary designations reflect your wishes
  • Make sure you have obtained sufficient death benefits

Review your beneficiary designations for the following types of accounts to ensure they reflect your wishes:

  • Employer-sponsored benefits
  • Annuities
  • Bank and brokerage accounts (if P.O.D – payable on death)

Review jointly owned property documents to ensure they are titled in your trust and/or reflect your wishes:

  • Deeds to real property
  • Titles to all accounts

Planning to marry next year? 

  • Contact our firm to create a pre-nuptial agreement AND update your estate plan to reflect this change.

Recently married? 

  • Contact our firm to create a post-nuptial agreement AND update your estate plan to reflect this change.

We hope this checklist helps you find peace of mind. If you have any questions about year-end estate planning, please contact our office or another experienced estate planning attorney.

Law Offices of Daniel A. Hunt

The Law Offices of Daniel A. Hunt is a California law firm specializing in Estate Planning; Trust Administration & Litigation; Probate; and Conservatorships. We've helped over 10,000 clients find peace of mind. We serve clients throughout the greater Sacramento region and the state of California.