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Useful Things You Should Know About Setting up a Will

After working so hard to give you and your family a happy life, the last thing you want is for the wealth you created to get misused or mismanaged when you’re gone. If you are like most people, you want the wealth you acquired from many years of sweat and hard toil to sustain your family and perhaps continue generating more wealth. Most importantly, you want to have a say in who gets what, when, and how. You have to put your wishes down in writing for it to be legally binding in most places. As you might already know, this is what a will is all about. If you are in the dark about setting up a will, here are some things you need to know.

1. You Need an Experienced Attorney 

Let’s face it; death is part and parcel of being human. No one lives forever. Without a will and a testament, it is unlikely for your assets to be distributed or used the way you would want upon your unfortunate demise. When you die, the last thing you want is to leave your surviving family members with years of disputes and battles. This is why you should consider looking at wills and probate attorneys, what they do, and how they can help. Legal advice when creating a will can help ensure your estate remains the way you would want it upon your death. The attorney you hire can help ensure your wishes are fulfilled, whether individually or as a couple. 

2. Appropriately Select the Guardians

Procrastinating can be costly. The halls of justice are always souring with cases on inheritance disputes. This is because a majority of people die intestate. A will is one of those documents which should be put on the list of priorities. The lack of this paper in the event of your demise can bring about grave consequences to your precious family. It will help you specify a legal guardian who will take care of your children in your absence, especially if they are under 18 years. Failure to appoint a guardian will leave room for other people or the court to choose one for you. Remember, it is not a guarantee that the court will give your aunties, uncles, or grandma guardianship of your children.       

3. You Will Need a Witness

Preparing a will is not in many people’s vocabulary. However, neglecting this crucial step of life can bring about an unbelievable headache to your family in case you die. If you chose to prepare a will by yourself, don’t choose a witness as an heir. It’s always recommended you hire an attorney who is well-versed with the legal requirements needed to adequately execute your will.

4. Store It Safely

A will is one of the most essential documents you can afford for your family. It helps you to guard your inheritance and your loved ones after your demise. Unfortunately, the majority of adults avoid the task of preparing one, and if they do, they hide it away. This should not be the case. Consider two or three people whom you trust, and let them know how and where to retrieve your will once you’re gone. This will save your family from a mountain of agony as they try to figure out where you could have stored your last testimony.   

5. Choose Your Executor Carefully 

Truth be told, a majority of folks fear the thought of preparing a will. It feels like they are welcoming their own death. Preparing a will is one of the essential steps you should undertake while your breath lasts. It’s a crucial piece of document that deters disagreements and confusion by your family after your demise. For starters, you need to hire an attorney as your executor, a trusted friend, or a bank. They should understand your wishes and ensure they are following the law. A confidant will be compelled to take care of your estate while you are still alive, whereas the bank will control matters regarding your assets while still alive but disabled. Appoint two or three executors. Hiring one might be risky because they can repudiate their position or die before you do.

6. Keenly State Your Beneficiaries 

Finally, you need to clearly state your beneficiaries and keep the list updated regularly to ensure a fair distribution according to your wishes with minimal disputes. Furthermore, bear in mind that certain assets like your favorite classic car or the expensive gold watch from grandma cannot be divided unless sold to share the money. Decide on the one or two persons who will inherit some of those close-hearted assets.

Drawing up a will is one of the most vital things you can do for your family. It can be a special gift to the surviving kin, even in mourning. It helps them to prevent unwarranted struggles as they try to divide their possessions.

Featured Photo by Melinda Gimpel on Unsplash