There are so many to-do lists as the year comes to a close that it might be easy to overlook the steps you need to take to make sure your client's retirement plans are on track. Making mistakes could cost them thousands of dollars and you, their future business.

From deciding when it's best for them to start drawing Social Security benefits to making sure all their retirement accounts are tagged with the right beneficiaries to checking they're communicating with  their spouses about the future, it's easy to get overwhelmed with work demands.

In the short-term and the long-term, there are several tasks to take care of, according to David Littell, retirement director of the American College of Financial Services, which educates financial professionals, and David Shucavage, president of Carolina Estate Planners, a Wilmington. N.C., firm that specializes in retirement planning.

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