Get your affairs in order

Dear Dave,

One of my relatives just discovered she has cancer. She’s a single mom with two young kids, and I’m not sure if she’s prepared to face something like this. What are the best steps she can take financially at this point?

Shannon

Dear Shannon,

I’m really sorry to hear about this. I know cancer is a scary thing to hear, but please remember to pray and be there for her all you can. God willing, things can still turn out okay.

When people ask if a person has their affairs in order, they’re usually asking a couple of different questions. Are you right with God? Do you have life insurance and a will? Another important thing is to have all the paperwork of your life organized and in a safe place, so someone you trust can handle the details if things don’t turn out well.

Everyone should have a good term life insurance policy in place. My advice is to have a policy worth 10 times your annual income. When it comes to a will, make sure it’s state specific. Probate and estate regulations are not federal laws, they’re state laws. So any will should be drawn up according to guidelines for the state in which you live.

Make sure, too, that she has made arrangements for any minor children. It might be a good idea to sit down and talk with two or three trusted family members or close friends and decide who will take them if the worst should happen. Whoever this is should be incredibly responsible and caring, and willing to love and raise these kids as if they were their very own.

Good luck, Shannon. And God bless you and your family.

—Dave

Dave Ramsey is a trusted voice on money and business. He’s a best-selling author and his radio show is on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.


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2012-09-20 digital edition



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