Protecting your assets and ensuring your loved ones receive what you wish to leave them is one of the reasons to secure a will. “Why do I need a simple will?” you may ask. The reasons are plenty and intricate. Regardless if you plan nothing else, make sure that you take your legal affairs seriously and attend to them now so that your loved ones won’t have to deal with these complex things during their grieving process.
Who Will Look After the Kids?
It’s the fine details that you get to dictate by implementing a will. Otherwise, the state and local governing authorities will intervene on your behalf. This may lead to expensive administration fees and costly blows to your estate. Figure out who will act as legal guardians for your children in the tragic event that it becomes necessary and secure your wishes with a legal will to protect your loved ones.
You may opt to have the guardians move into the child’s home until they become of age. Keeping them in their familiar surroundings may be the most suitable option. Or, you can request that the kids be relocated to move into their guardian’s home. The options are up to you as every family needs to figure out what best suits their needs.
Naming Your Executor
Choosing a family member or friend to be the Executor of your will can ensure some peace of mind. If you don’t appoint someone, the lawyer will appoint one for you. The executor you name may also decide to let the lawyer take over if the family begins disputing anything or it is too stressful for the individual to manage. Speak with your chosen executor ahead of time. Let them know where your important legal documents are, which bank you deal with, the name of your lawyer and where the key to your safety deposit box is etc.
Protect Your Property
If you wish to leave particular things to certain people, a will can help you document your desires. People divide their personal property including:
- Vacation Timeshares
- Web Addresses and Domain Names
- Company Assets
- Business Legalities
Sorting out the myriad of details that comprise your life can save your loved ones thousands of dollars in the future. Don’t let the government take your hard earned assets away due to a simple lack of planning.
Protect Your Health and Mental Competency
In the event that you become incapacitated and need to be hooked up to machines, who’s got your back? If you start to suffer from symptoms of dementia years from now, who will provide for your basic needs? If you become unable to manage your finances, do you have someone you trust to take over? These questions are vital to pursue. It can be difficult to think about certain “what ifs” however, if you want to protect yourself and everything you have ever worked for, it is necessary to look at the hard truth in an objective way.
Communicate Your Plan With the Loved Ones Involved
Many people simply start their will by writing lists of who gets what. This is a great way to begin brainstorming and encourage discussion with your loved ones. If you have a clear plan and solidify your lists in a simple will, you can hopefully avoid any feuding between family in the future. Let your family know who the appointed executor is.
There is no guarantee that probate law will not be involved down the road. Much of this will depend on the amount you are leaving and how involved your assets are. Sadly, many families dispute everything in court until there is absolutely nothing left. If your family is full of greed or speaks with a sense of entitlement when discussing YOUR assets; perhaps you wish to address these issues now. Remember, you can always will your goodies to your favorite charity or anywhere you feel your assets will be most appreciated.
Am I Eligible For a Simple Will?
Are you under 50 years of age? Are you in good health? If your assets are not expected to be subject to estate taxes, a simple will may suffice. The best course of action may be to speak with reputable lawyer during a free consultation. Bring a detailed list of your items in order to depict a clear picture of what you are trying to protect.
If you have multiple properties or any kind of personal business, you may require more than a simple will. Your best bet is to consult with a lawyer who specializes in will and estate planning. Make sure you connect with the person you hire. After all, they are essentially in charge of distributing everything you have worked so hard for.