(NewsUSA) - Every family has a unique financial situation with its own set of challenges. However, financial planning can be a bit more complex for LGBTQ+ couples. Depending on the state in which they live, LGBTQ+ couples may find it hard to secure access to health care, higher earning opportunities and retirement savings.
CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM professionals can help LGBTQ+ couples navigate these challenges and develop financial planning strategies tailored to their specific needs and the laws of their state.
Here are 4 examples of strategies that a CFP® professional can help you consider:
1. Estate planning: Estate planning is important for LGBTQ+ couples, particularly when considerable assets are involved such as multiple retirement accounts or real estate. In addition to a will and beneficiary designations, your estate plan should also explain how your medical wishes should be honored. Your plan should include health care proxies and medical powers of attorney.
2. Retirement planning: A CFP® professional will work with you to choose the best savings and investment options to meet your retirement goals. They can help align your investment options with your values, combine or consolidate retirement accounts, and make annual contributions. A CFP® professional can also help you review your beneficiary designations to ensure your loved ones are protected. This includes understanding the tax implications of naming a spouse and unmarried partner as a beneficiary.
3. Insurance planning: A CFP® professional can help you evaluate your needs for foundational insurance -- that is, health, life, long-term care and disability insurance. It is important to know your rights, resources and insurance-policy details before incorporating insurance into your financial plan. For example, many insurance carriers recognize domestic partner status and will offer a preferred rate if you live with your life partner, even if you are not legally married.
4. Family planning: Deciding whether to get married and whether to start a family involves many important financial considerations for LGBTQ+ couples. Marriage may offer several long-term financial benefits, including health care coverage and federal protection of certain assets. Alternatively, a domestic partnership agreement can provide financial protections for unmarried LGBTQ+ couples. And starting a family may mean saving for fertility treatments, or a domestic or international adoption program.
These strategies, along with other financial best practices, can help put LGBTQ+ couples on a path to financial success.
You can find a CFP® professional by visiting LetsMakeAPlan.org and using the Find A CFP® Professional tool. You can also filter your search to find a planner with experience working with LGBTQ+ individuals and couples.