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Last Updated: Monday, 16 July 2007, 13:54 GMT 14:54 UK
Protecting your dependants
It is important to think about how your dependants would manage financially if you died and to make what plans you can to provide for them.



HOW MUCH WOULD YOUR DEPENDANTS NEED?

Try to work out how much your dependants would need to live on after you die.

Don't worry if your figures aren't 100% accurate - broad estimates are ok.

Using a budget calculator might help you to do this.

Remember to think about how long they would need to be supported after your death and whether their needs would change as they get older.

Try to build in the effects of any changes that they would have to make to the way they live - such as taking on additional child care for example. You might want to consider the effects of several different options.

You might also want to think about whether there is anything specific that you want to make sure is covered - such as paying off a mortgage for example.

YOUR OPTIONS

You could take out some life insurance to provide an income or a lump sum.

For example, you might want to take out a policy that would pay off your mortgage.

But first check what insurance you already have.

Check whether you have any life cover at work. And find out if you can pay extra to increase it if you need to - this is often cheaper than arranging your own cover.

Check what any pension plans would pay out if you die - don't forget to look at old plans as well as your current one.

You might also want to take any savings into account if your dependants could use them to help tide them over.

Check out whether you would be entitled to any state benefits - you can do this via the Directgov website.

But, if you can, it's probably best not to rely on these alone.

MAKING A WILL

Whatever your circumstances, it always makes sense for you to make a will.

Keep it up to date and make sure that other people know where to find it.

This will help to make sure that your money goes where you want if you die and can help to safeguard the interests of your dependants.

REVIEWING YOUR PLANS

Remember to review your plans from time to time, especially if your circumstances change.

GETTING HELP

If you would like some help sorting out your plans, you could think about talking to an adviser.


Useful checklists and information


Handy tools

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


Contact numbers and internet links

Financial Services Authority - Consumer Information
Information from the UK's financial services watchdog.
Consumer helpline: 0845 606 1234 (call rates may vary)

Directgov
Links to all government information and services.

Association of British Insurers

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


This checklist was developed jointly by the BBC and the Financial Services Authority (FSA), the UK watchdog for the financial services industry. It does not provide financial or other professional advice. If you want advice specifically tailored to your personal circumstances you should consult an adviser.






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