In more recent times, it has become important to include frequent flyer miles into your estate plan.
Q: Why have frequent flyer miles become a point of concern with estate planning?
A: Each airline has different rules and regulations on the transfer of miles after death. When celebrity chef and author Anthony Bourdain died, his will contained a directive leaving his frequent flyer miles to his estranged wife to “dispose of in accordance to what she believes to be his wishes.”
Q: How are airlines helping in the ease of transfer of flyer miles to an estate?
A: Many airlines, have clear policies indicating frequent flyer miles are not transferable upon death. However, some of those same policies go on to stipulate that the airline may transfer miles to certain authorized persons at their discretion.
Q: Why have airline miles become apart of estate planning importance?
A: Your airline miles may be a way to leave a legacy to someone after your death. Of course, frequent flyer policies may change at any time. You might be better off using or donating your miles now, while you can, rather than risk losing them after you die.
Q: Why has it become important to consider these stipulations in estate planning?
A: In other words, if you include a clause in your will bequeathing your frequent flyer miles, the airline may or may not honor it. Talk with your estate planning professional for help deciphering airline policies and taking the necessary steps to transfer your miles. To help ensure your miles will transfer, include a provision in your will that makes your wishes clear. That will provide important documentation if the airline requests proof of your intent.
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