Having a Will in place is a fundamental act of kindness toward friends, family and loved ones. Such legal documents provide a detailed account of your wishes and help avoid speculation and disagreement. Despite the loving nature of thoughtfully crafted Wills, organizations such as AARP indicate that as many as 60 percent of Americans polled do not have one in place.
Procrastination aside, some things cause everyday people to put off drafting a Will they should have completed years ago. Among them is a lack of knowledge about such documents and the confidence to dive in and get started. While the first step may be to contact a Will and estate planning law firm, these are some considerations that may help build your confidence.
Make Clear Decisions about Will Issues
A smartly crafted will does not necessarily throw around a lot of big words or complicated directions. As the adage goes, “Keep it Simple Silly.” That’s a terrific jumping off point for many people. Just use concise everyday language to make your points and wishes known. These are some of the critical decisions that you will need discuss in the document.
- Executor: Consider a trusted friend, family member or impartial party to act as your executor. The person should have your trust and confidence.
- Name Guardians: Minor children and their assets require care after you are gone. Name someone you trust and who shares your values.
- Debt Considerations: Do the math on wealth vs. debt and outline how things will be paid down.
- Division of Assets: Make clear decisions about how wealth, personal items and other assets are to be distributed. This is an area that requires a high level of detail.
After you take the time to brainstorm and discuss these items with trusted friends and family members, create a document that outlines your decisions. This is not going to be a draft of the final Will, just a checklist of your wishes that can be used to develop a legally-binding document confidently. And while some people try do-it-yourself templates, it’s in your best interest to work with a professional on the final Will.
Legal Assistance Provides Lasting Confidence
Decisions about the critical elements of your Will are indeed confidence boosters. But beyond a detailed account of your wishes, it’s important to remember that the law can be complicated. Many firms work in niche areas such as Wills and estate planning to provide the highly focused advice everyday people deserve. These are reasons that you can enjoy lasting confidence after completing your Will with an attorney.
- Validity: A binding Will requires specific legal and procedural criteria to be met. An attorney can help you check those important boxes correctly.
- Challenges: Gaps and legally-inconsistent language can open the door to your will being challenged in probate court. An attorney can provide critical advice to make your Will secure.
- Accuracy: Having a professional, second set of eyes review details such as property values, assets, wealth, and debts can clear up inconsistencies before they become a problem.
If you are one of the 42 percent of Baby Boomers, 78 percent of Millennials or 64 percent Gen Xers without a Will, take the time to make decisions and then call the France Law Firm with confidence.