TIAA Launches TIAA Safe Estate

A virtual safe deposit box for estate planning and other important documents now available

TIAA, a leading financial services provider, announced today the launch of TIAA Safe Estate®, a virtual safe deposit box, designed to help people gather, organize and securely store critical estate planning and financial documents, including medical directives, insurance policies, wills, trusts and financial account information. More than simply storing these crucial documents, it offers guidance about what you need and why, organized around 30 topics from categories including Legacy, Life & family, Finances and Health.
“In the event of a medical emergency or your passing, how long would it take for a family member to gather up all of your vital information like a living will, long-term care insurance, power of attorney or final wishes? It’s surprising how few people know where to find their loved ones’ important documents when it matters most,” said Alicia Waltenberger, director of Wealth Planning Strategies at TIAA. “Losing a family member to death or incapacitation can be one of life’s most difficult times, and yet there are many important decisions to make. By documenting your final requests and giving your loved ones secure access to the information to carry out your plans, you can provide comfort to your family and assurance that your legacy will be honored. Organizing your personal and financial affairs in advance can also help avoid legal complications and family strife.”
TIAA Safe Estate gives users the option to either digitally upload physical documents or simply note the location of the paperwork in their home, office or physical safe deposit box.
Once the documents and wishes are uploaded, users can appoint trusted loved ones as delegates. TIAA Safe Estate is customizable so users can specify contacts for each topic or document. Users can also grant full access to key delegates, like their immediate family, but limit access to others to just a few topics. Users can also delegate someone to be a survivor designee, who would have full access to the participant’s information after their death.
“We know that no one really likes to think about their own mortality, so we’ve designed this service to help our participants overcome some of the emotional obstacles often associated with thorough estate planning,” said Scott Blandford, chief digital officer at TIAA. “We’ve made TIAA Safe Estate incredibly easy-to-use, highly informative and backed by state-of-the-art security technology to ensure your information is secure and your wishes are articulated.”
TIAA Safe Estate leverages the same security and privacy measures that protect TIAA’s user accounts and other personal information. In addition, it also uses a new encryption solution that adds an extra layer of protection to uploaded files. No one at TIAA can see information or files entered in TIAA Safe Estate; only the account holder and individuals they identify have access.
The service is a free benefit for anyone with a TIAA online account.
The full list of topics include:
  • General power of attorney
  • Tax records
  • Life insurance
  • Revocable trust
  • Property records
  • Living will
  • Property insurance
  • Disability insurance
  • Long-term care insurance
  • Employment information
  • Financial plan
  • Funeral arrangements
  • Auto insurance
  • Marriage certificate
  • Divorce decree
  • Stock and bond certificates
  • Birth certificate
  • Passport
  • Driver’s license or ID
  • Military records
  • Academic / professional experience
  • Religious documents
  • Adoption records
  • Spousal and child support
  • Vehicle titles
  • Family history
  • Messages to loved ones