May 2005
Volume 1, Number 3
Table of Contents

Financial Planning:
Summary Checklist For Financial Planning For An Elderly Client

By A. Kimberley Dayton, Timothy H. Guare, Louis A. Mezzullo, and Molly M. Wood

Client Name: ______________________________

Date: ________________

Goal Setting/Database: (Importance: High Medium Low)

1. Establishing realistic short-term and long-term financial goals

2. Developing a satisfactory recordkeeping system for home

3. Obtaining a safe-deposit box for storing valuable papers and possessions

4. Obtaining a comprehensive current inventory of household furnishings and possessions

5. Preparing a household budget listing expected income and expenses

6. Other: ______________________________

Credit Management: (Importance: High Medium Low)

1. Establishing credit

2. Reducing credit card debt

3. Reducing general debt

4. Preparing for a major purchase or expenditure that will require borrowing

5. Securing a home equity loan

6. Funding education for children or grandchildren

7. Other: ______________________________

Insurance: (Importance: High Medium Low)

1. Establishing sufficient life insurance coverage for client and, if applicable, spouse or other dependents

2. Obtaining continuous health insurance coverage for family

3. Establishing adequate long-term disability insurance coverage

4. Ensuring adequate homeowners' or renters' insurance coverage

5. Obtaining additional insurance protection for valuables

6. Maintaining a personal liability (umbrella) insurance policy

7. Ensuring sufficient professional liability insurance

8. Other: ______________________________

Accumulating Capital: (Importance: High Medium Low)

1. Establishing regular savings through payroll withholding or other savings programs

2. Establishing an emergency fund equal to at least three months' salary

3. Determining appropriate investment objectives

4. Establishing a proper balance between stocks and savings in the portfolio

5. Periodically reviewing the investment portfolio

6. Reducing risk in the investment portfolio

7. Participating in an employer's stock-purchase or tax-deferred plan

8. Diversifying the investment portfolio

9. Participating in dividend reinvestment plans of stocks or mutual funds

10. Buying a first home or condominium

11. Making major home improvements

12. Purchasing a second home

13. Purchasing a vacation time-share

14. Directly investing in income-producing real estate

15. Owning real estate through a limited partnership

16. Other: ______________________________

Tax Planning: (Importance: High Medium Low)

1. Understanding current tax laws and tax-saving techniques

2. Maintaining adequate tax records

3. Evaluating tax-advantaged investments

4. Planning for significant increases in future income

5. Understanding the tax implications of full- or part-time self-employment

6. Other: ______________________________

Retirement Planning: (Importance: High Medium Low)

1. Making individual retirement account contributions

2. If self-employed, participating in a Keogh plan or simplified employee pension plan

3. Participating in an employer-sponsored thrift plan, savings plan, or salary reduction (401(k)) plan

4. Retiring before age 65

5. Investing in tax-deferred annuities

6. Estimating income that will be available on retirement

7. Taking action to fund a comfortable retirement

8. If preretiree, evaluating investment portfolio mix in light of retirement income needs

9. Evaluating expected pension benefits

10. Choosing between a lump-sum pension payment and an annuity at retirement

11. Ensuring that the Social Security Administration has accurate records of earnings

12. Estimating what social security retirement benefits will be

13. Becoming aware of impact of inflation

14. Identifying fixed and variable incomes

15. Developing inflation protection plan

16. Other: ______________________________

Estate Planning: (Importance: High Medium Low)

1. Maintaining a valid and up-to-date will

2. Preparing a letter of instructions

3. Familiarizing immediate family with both the location and contents of will and letter of instructions

4. Appointing a financial guardian for dependent children

5. Establishing an adult guardianship arrangement in the event that either spouse becomes disabled or mentally incapacitated

6. Establishing trust funds as part of estate planning

7. Exploring alternative methods of ownership of real estate to ascertain the most advantageous

8. Considering the implications of business or real estate interests in more than one state

9. Evaluating the impact of possible uninsured illness (e.g., a nursing home stay) during retirement

10. Other: ______________________________

Copr. (C) 2005 West, a Thomson business. No claim to orig. U.S. govt. works. This article is reprinted with permission from West, a primary sponsor of the General Practice, Solo and Small Firm Division.


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