The coronavirus has changed many people’s financial circumstances quickly. There are steps you can take if your income has decreased suddenly. But do you and those you care about have plans in place should one of you become unable to manage your finances? Here are some things to help you answer that question.
Who handles the finances in your family?
If you’re the money manager of your household, would your partner be able to manage the budget and bills without your guidance? If you don’t usually handle the finances, would you know where to begin? We have six questions you and your spouse can answer together. How you answer the questions will show how prepared each of you is to handle the family finances. Your responses will also give you a checklist of information to share if one of you doesn’t pass the test.
Track your virtual assets
In addition to physical assets, you also accumulate digital assets –things of value or significance created when you’re online or on one of your devices. When preparing for your future, you might want to transfer, share, or make your digital assets available to someone else. We have tips to create a plan for your virtual valuables.
Set up help now, so it’s ready if you need it
Choosing someone trustworthy now to help you manage your finances if you aren’t able to do so–either temporarily or longer term – can be a good idea. Perhaps you choose your spouse, because you share a joint banking account. Perhaps you choose another family member or a friend. Regardless of who you choose, here are some options for financial caregiving that you can discuss with them ahead of time.
Help your loved ones plan
You could also be tapped to assist someone else, like a parent or older relative. Our joint advisory with the Securities and Exchange Commission is a useful tool, as it can help you walk them through ways to be prepared. It stresses the importance of talking with them about advance planning before it’s too late. It also has good tips on how to manage their money when the time comes.
Note: The following article was written by Erin Scheithe of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau