What documents does a new parent need?

Great article here on The Washington Post about this topic. With so much going on as a new parent, the forms and logistics can often slide to the back of your mind. No bueno.

The items:

Birth Certificate: No brainer. Here are the vital records centers in Massachusetts.

Social Security Card: Cool thing is that you can apply right at the hospital.

Will: Depressing, yes, but once you have a child, you absolutely need one.

Guardianship document: Here are some questions to consider.

Letter of instruction: This is similar to the above; it’s essentially guidelines for how you want your child raised in the unlikely event you die.

Trusts: Also called “trust funds” and generally associated with the affluent, but not just for the affluent. (Although if you have a high net worth, it allows you to pass down money without as much taxation.)

Beneficiary change form: Most important thing to note here is that beneficiaries listed here override what’s in your will.

Life insurance policy: It’s a new life. Might as well insure it, right?

Health insurance card/policy: Add the new child to your insurance.

Immunization records: This is important for both (a) travel and (b) when you need to start applying to school.

529 account: This is how you start saving for college, and you can often do it for as little as a penny. Here’s some info on Fidelity’s MA 529 plan.

Any other forms we’re missing?

Kristin Smith

Kristin is a wife, mom, doula and a kick ass swaddler. She spends her time helping families get top notch support throughout their parenting journey. When she isn't swaddling babies, she can be found sipping latte's and watching her daughter play softball. Read more...

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