Oftentimes, account owners wishing to provide a legacy for their heirs list them as beneficiaries on their retirement accounts as well as their Individual accounts (often called Individual TOD (Transfer on Death) or POD (Payable on Death)). What may not be top of mind is a little known tool called the Per Stirpes election.

Per Stirpes is Latin for “by branch” or “by roots” and it allows account owners to designate the heirs of their heirs in the event they predecease you. This is best illustrated by an example.

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