I think it's really important to be prepared for the unexpected. One of those unexpected outcomes might be that I could die much earlier than I hope to. Maybe even both my spouse and I could die at the same time, leaving my family to take over our affairs and care of our child.

We have gone through an estate planning process with a lawyer to formalize some aspects of our wishes, but there are other important topics that are not part of those documents.

So, I have a google doc shared with my spouse and my parents called "If Cassey Dies". It has lots of helpful information on it, specific to our household. Perhaps you should consider making such a document, and sharing it with people who may need this information some day.

# Contents of my "If I Die" Doc

  • major bills and how they are paid
  • insurance providers/policy numbers
  • life insurance details
  • overview of financial accounts we have/where they are held
  • Notes on services we are currently getting through my work, so if I died but my spouse didn't, my spouse would know about that
  • Health insurance info
  • Advice link for my spouse to manage the life insurance windfall payout
  • contact info for insurance agent, estate planning lawyer
  • other contacts: my parents, spouse's parents, my work HR, a handyman friend who could help with house stuff.
  • Kid stuff: daycare and primary care doc, medication or any other allergies. Meaning/history behind my kid's name; my parents wouldn't necessarily remember the specifics but the kid may want to know this later on.
  • phone numbers of friends that should be notified first/by phone if something has happened (especially important if you have friend groups that are distinct from one another and not going to see a Facebook post for whatever reason)

# Other Digital Preparations

If you use Facebook, set up your "legacy preferences" for your account, if you feel so inclined.

If you have a Google account, you can set up an "inactive account manager" so that if your account is inactive for some period (3 months minimum; could be set longer), and you don't respond to Google's attempts to contact you, another person you designate will be able to download an archive/access your account. Consider having that set up, too.

# Not sure where to start?

I have heard many people speak highly of Cake but I haven't tried it myself.

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