in the case of death legacy binder

February Love: The Importance of a Legacy Binder + Free Checklist

financial health financial well-being legacy Feb 28, 2022

February, in the US, is often known for being a month dedicated to and all about love. But February should not only be about valentines, it should be about recognizing the love of one-self, family, and friends. As part of your financial health journey, you are building a legacy that will need to be received and/or handled by your family/loved ones at some point.


An unspoken gift 


As a money and emotions coach and social worker (with years and years of experience holding space for people in their grief), I want to impart one of the most loving things that you can do for yourself and your loved ones is to start putting together your legacy binder.


Dealing with the emotions


Most of us put off the task of organizing a legacy binder due to being unwilling to face the uncomfortable feelings that tragedy may unexpectedly strike or acknowledge that we will pass on.


For others, it may be easier not to start because it takes a lot of thought, intention, and work. However, by starting your legacy binder you are leaving your loved ones clarity, strength, and confidence in how to move forward both emotionally and practically during their time of grief. Such a gift. 


How to start


Below, find a list to get you started. I don't want to misguide you, this is a project that will take time and dedication but it will feel satisfying when done.


Connect with loved ones


Along the way, connect with your loved ones and tell them your intentions. I bet they will be happy and you might even inspire them to do theirs! 




For a free comprehensive Legacy Binder Checklist and instructions, please click here. You will need to enter your email address and it will be sent to you!  Otherwise, take a moment to read over the following to get you started. 



Legacy Binder (in case of emergency, incapacity, or death): 

  • Letter or video to loved ones
  • Birth Certificates, Social Security Cards, Marriage 
  • Certificate and Passports, Education 
  • Degrees/Diplomas
  • Adoption or Guardianship Papers
  • Insurance Information (auto, homeowner’s, renter’s, 
  • health, long-term care, identity theft protection and life 
  • insurance)
  • Estate Plan or Wills and Funeral Instructions
  • Advance Medical Directive and Power of Attorney Forms
  • Defined Benefits upon Death Booklet (for pension plans - says “call this number if someone dies” on it)
  • Financial Accounts Log - all bank and retirement accounts (and designated beneficiaries)
  • Safe Deposit Log w/keys and access instructions


If you are interested in more financial health tips and resources, make sure to sign-up for my monthly email list. 

Questions: email [email protected]

Mariah Hudler, MSW, MBA, CFT-Iā„¢ is a therapeutically informed financial wealth & wellbeing coach. She works with individuals, couples, families, entrepreneurs, groups, and organizations to make Wealth & Wellbeing a joyful part of life.

Disclaimer:Ā This blog is for education only. PleaseĀ consult with aĀ qualified professional when you have any questions about your personal financial, tax, or legal situation. Information contained in this post is for informational purposes only and not intended to replace professional advice.

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