Many people mistakenly believe that they don’t need to establish a will until later in life. However, a will is for more than just the ill or elderly. Although it can feel a bit grim to consider why you may need a will, it is extremely important to take action to preserve your assets and secure a stable future for your family. Nobody plans for tragedy to strike, and if it does, you need to be prepared.
Creating a will is about more than just divvying up your possessions, it’s about securing your assets for your family, preserving their futures, and ensuring that your wishes are carried out after you’re gone. If you are wondering whether or not you need a will, consider the following:
A Will Can Provide for Your Family
You don’t need to be extremely wealthy to find value in creating a will or estate plan. Even a modest savings or income can be extremely valuable to your family after you’re gone. Also, any life insurance policies or other benefits programs you have could help your loved ones with funeral fees and other necessary expenses. However, if you do not have a legally binding will, your assets might not go to the family members you wish.
A Will Can Protect Your Children
Not only does a will serve to protect your possessions, it can also be used to determine who has the authority to care for your children. If something were to happen to you and your child’s other parent, your will can give your person of choice the authority to serve as your child’s legal guardian in your stead. If you do not declare a guardian for your child and something does happen to you, the court will choose a caretaker instead. In most cases, this means your child will go to their closest relative.
A Will Preserves Your Wishes
Most people have a distinct idea of how they want their assets handled, even after they’re gone. For this reason, having a will to preserve your decisions is particularly important. With a will, you can choose who receives your house, your vehicles, as well as any other important possessions, like heirlooms or valuable trinkets. If you want your daughter to receive your jewelry, for example, you can say so in your will, ensuring that those important assets go to your intended recipient.
Without a will, state law will take over and a judge will divide your assets however he or she sees fit. If you have a spouse or children, your wealth and possessions will likely fall to them. However, these decisions could be contested by other relatives who also believe they should have a share of your assets. In order to prevent your estate from going into probate, which can be complex, stressful, and time-consuming, make sure you establish a will and estate plan as soon as possible.
Contact Casey, Simmons & Bryant, PLLCto discuss your options with our Jackson estate planning attorneys and create your will today.