I had to read this article twice. It says that Vanguard is requiring customers to have the same beneficiary for all their IRAs. Retirement Think pointed me to it on Financial Planning.com. It seems that Vanguard has sent out letters to 170,000 of their IRA clients who had different beneficiaries on their multiple IRA accounts that they had to have the same beneficiary. It’s possible that someone could have an IRAs holding money rolled over from employer retirement plans, traditional IRAs (both pretax and aftertax), and Roth IRAs.

No matter. According to Forbes, if the client doesn’t change the beneficiary, then Vanguard will do it for them. Forbes also made two customer service calls to Vanguard. One rep was quoted as saying that “There’s no way to override the computer,” and added that Vanguard is “a low-cost provider” and permitting different beneficiaries would increase its cost.

So much for personal financial planning.

Pardon me for showing my generation gap: Give the People What They Want is an album by the English rock group The Kinks released in August of 1981 in the US, but it was delayed until January of 1982 in Europe.