When you first started contributing to a retirement plan, you named a beneficiary or beneficiaries for your plan contracts. Your beneficiaries are the people or entities (such as trusts, charities or estates) who will inherit your retirement assets when you pass away. You likely have designated beneficiaries for other investments and financial products, such as IRAs, annuities, mutual funds and life insurance. But have you updated these beneficiary designations as your life has changed?
Remember, your beneficiary designations have significant legal standing: They even supersede those you name in your will. Neglecting to update these designations means your money may not be distributed according to your wishes. In fact, if you don’t name your beneficiaries, your assets could get tied up in probate court — resulting in unfavorable tax treatment of your funds.
When reviewing your beneficiaries:
TIAA-CREF Individual & Institutional Services, LLC, and Teachers Personal Investors Services, Inc., members FINRA, distribute securities products. Annuity products are issued by TIAA (Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association), New York, NY.