By Lane V. Erickson, Attorney
So you have completed your Idaho estate planning. Congratulations! You have now accomplished more than 68 percent of adults in America. However, before you get too excited about what you have done, it is a great idea to look over what you have completed and make sure that it actually accomplishes what you want. More importantly, it is wise for you to review your Idaho estate plan including your life insurance to avoid common mistakes that can cause problems. Here’s a list of these mistakes, and if you have made them, a description of the steps you can take to fix these mistakes.
The first and most common mistake found in Idaho estate plans that include life insurance is if you’ve named a minor child or even a young adult as a beneficiary of a life insurance policy, that is a big mistake that needs to be fixed. Under Idaho law it is illegal for a minor to be the recipient directly of life insurance proceeds. Rather, before money can be distributed to the minor, there has to be a legal guardian and or Conservator who is named who will receive those monies and hold them for the benefit of the minor child. If all you have done is named a minor as a beneficiary, there is room for a legal argument to be made by several adults that they should be named as the guardian and conservator of that child. This would leave them in control of the money.