Updating your insurance probably isn’t top-of-mind on your big day, but they are an important part of your for better or worse commitment. If you decide to change your name, there are a lot of steps that have to be taken in order to change it on every utility bill, financial account and library card. We’ve created a handy checklist to help you through this process. Regardless of if you change your name, you should update your insurance to fit your needs now that you are no longer single.
A beneficiary is the person or entity (like a business or trust) that receives the benefit of something like your insurance coverage when you’re gone. When you own a life insurance policy, for example, the beneficiary receives the check.
That person is probably going to be your spouse now. So, update your beneficiary. If you have coverage through your workplace, be sure to update your beneficiary designation for that policy as well.
In addition to life insurance policies, review and update your beneficiaries as needed for the following:
- Retirement accounts (IRA and Roth IRA)
- Workplace retirement plans (Pension, 401(k), 403(b) and others)
- Flexible spending accounts (FSA, HSA, Dependent Care FSA)
These allow you to designate a beneficiary who will inherit the account if you die. It’s also a good idea to update any wills or trusts that you may have. The beneficiary designation on an account will supersede what’s in a will, but it’s still a good idea to have everything match.
Consider Combining Coverage
Start at your job. Ordinarily, you have a small window of time annually to choose your health and employer-sponsored insurance coverages for the following year. After that window passes, those choices remain fixed — unless you experience a qualified “life event.” Marriage is one of those rare events.
Keep in mind that you typically have a limited amount of time from your wedding day to choose new coverage. Be sure to take a look at each of the plans available through your jobs and assess your options.
Next, look at your personal insurance — particularly car insurance. If you’ve been carrying two separate policies, you’ll probably save money by going with a single policy for both cars. Plus, you’ll likely get additional savings, since insurance companies consider people who are married less risky than singles (score!).
Consider Increasing Your Coverage
Now that you’re married, you may need more insurance. For instance, does your existing renter’s or homeowner’s policy cover your new bling? Check your policy’s limits for jewelry and consider adding a rider if you need additional coverage. Also, make sure you have enough coverage to replace all those amazing gifts you got.
If you have a mortgage or other major expenses or are considering having children soon, you may want additional life or disability insurance. On the other hand, if your combined assets are quite high, you may want to add an umbrella policy to protect those assets in a potential lawsuit.
Re-Evaluate Your Deductibles
If you’re transitioning from a one-income household to a two-income family, it’s time to give your deductibles a fresh look. With both of you on a single insurance policy and with a two-person income, it may make sense to raise your deductibles. For instance, if your auto insurance deductible was $500 when you were flying solo, see whether $1,000 or more would be a good fit for your new family.
Raising your deductibles is one of the easiest, instantaneous ways to decrease your insurance premiums. So be sure to review all your policy deductibles — auto, home or renter’s, medical, dental and more.
Review Your New Routines
If you relocated around your marriage, you may be able to save money on your car insurance. The amount you pay is dependent on where you live, so you’ll likely see a rate change accompanying your new location.
Furthermore, let your insurer know if your commute looks different after the wedding bells. If you have a shorter drive, or have swapped out your car travel for public transit, you’ll probably see a drop in your premium as well.
Questions? Want to learn more? Here’s 4 easy ways to reach us:
PS Here’s a few words from one client that trusts Stromsoe Insurance Agency:
“I had a good experience with this umbrella insurance query. Sarah Long is our agent and she always treats us as though we are her family- that is, with the best of care and attention.”
Anita Born – Murrieta, CA – Client Since 2003
PPS Every policy is backed by our iron clad, 100% complete satisfaction guarantee. Ask for your copy today!