What is a Transfer-on-Death Designation

...and when might it make sense for you?

A “transfer-on-death” or “TOD” designation provides for a simple and direct way to transfer assets to named beneficiaries without going through the probate process.  The TOD designation is basically an agreement between you and your financial institution wherein you designate who will become the owner(s) of the assets in your account(s) upon your death.  There are many attractive features to a TOD account designation, but, there are instances when a TOD account has the potential to convolute rather than simplify the settling of an estate.  Set forth below is a brief discussion of the pros and cons of a TOD account.