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Starting a Family Checklist

General informationYesNoN/A
1. Has relevant personal information been gathered?imageimageimage
2. Marital status?

  • Time frame for starting a family
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3. Has financial situation been assessed?

  • Income
  • Expenses
  • Assets
  • Debts and liabilities
  • Insurance information
  • Employee benefits available
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Notes:
Money managementYesNoN/A
1. Have financial goals been determined or revised?

  • Short-term goals
  • Intermediate-term goals
  • Long-term goals
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2. Has budget been updated to reflect changes in income and expenses?

  • Housing costs
  • Transportation costs
  • Food, clothing, and other household expenses
  • Health-care expenses
  • Life and disability insurance premiums
  • Adoption costs
  • Child-care costs
  • Temporary or permanent reduction in income if parent chooses to stay with child rather than work outside the home
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3. Has an emergency reserve account equal to at least three to six months’ worth of living expenses been set aside?imageimageimage
Notes:
Insurance planningYesNoN/A
1. Has need for life insurance been evaluated?imageimageimage
2. Have beneficiary choices been updated?imageimageimage
3. Has the need for disability insurance been evaluated?imageimageimage
4. Is health insurance coverage adequate?

  • Maternity costs
  • Labor and delivery costs
  • Changes to health-care providers
  • Health-care expenses, including premium costs, co-payments, coinsurance, coordination of benefits, and deductibles
  • Other employer-sponsored health plan options (if family coverage under other plan is better or more cost effective)
  • COBRA benefits if job loss is anticipated
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Notes:
Estate planning issuesYesNoN/A
1. Have valid wills been executed or updated?imageimageimage
2. Durable power of attorney or health-care proxy?imageimageimage
3. Has guardian for child been chosen?imageimageimage
4. Have other estate planning strategies been discussed?

  • Use of trusts
  • Gifting assets
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Notes:
Education planningYesNoN/A
1. Has need to start saving for college early been discussed?imageimageimage
2. Have college savings options been outlined or considered?

  • Coverdell education savings accounts
  • Series EE bonds
  • Custodial accounts
  • Section 529 plans
  • Other savings/investment options
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Notes:
Retirement planningYesNoN/A
1. Have ways to resolve competing needs to save for retirement and a child’s education been discussed?imageimageimage
Notes:
Tax planningYesNoN/A
1. Have changes to federal and state income tax situation been discussed?

  • Additional exemptions
  • Child tax credit
  • Child and dependent care credit
  • Adoption credit
  • Use of flexible spending accounts
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2. If child has already been born, has Social Security number been obtained?imageimageimage
Notes:
OtherYesNoN/A
1. Has eligibility for unpaid leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 been determined?imageimageimage
2. Is paid leave available through state or employer (short-term disability benefits or other benefits)?imageimageimage
3. Have child-care options been discussed?imageimageimage
4. Adoption issues? Are adoption benefits through employer available?imageimageimage
Notes: