You want to be in charge. You want the people you select to inherit the fruits of your labor. You want the special heirloom to go to a certain person. Did you write it in a will?
Here are 5 reasons why you should.
- What happens if you die without will? Dying without will is called “headed” dying. You are the testator – the person who can call the shots – if you don’t then you are registered and that means the court will make the decisions for you based on the laws of your state. This may mean that when they follow the law, the person who becomes the beneficiary – the one who receives your assets – may not be the person you would have chosen.
- My spouse and I can have a common will, right? Wrong! Well, you may but it is not recommended and it may not even be recognized in some states. Spouses rarely die at the same time. Also, each of you has your own life. You may have assets that are not jointly held or you may want to leave assets to someone from your past, such as a child from another marriage.
- Can I leave certain things to certain people? You want your best friend from your childhood to get the antique doll you used to play with. You don’t want your sister to take the necklace your mother gave you; you want me to go to your daughter. You can make those bequests and more. Be specific in your will so that your wishes are followed.
- Can anyone contest my will? Contesting is a challenge to the legal validity of a will. Your state laws will apply, but in some cases, a spouse, former spouse, or child may attempt to contest a will that goes against local inheritance laws. The best defense is a good offense. Only the validity of the will can be challenged through channels as if the deceased were competent or not or if there was coercion or fraud. A clearly drafted legal will should stand up to a challenge.
- Who Should Be My Executor? The choice is yours. It could be your spouse (if he is still alive), a child or a trusted friend. If you feel you need the extra help because your business is complicated, you can also appoint a lawyer or financial advisor.
Another question that is often raised is that you need to ask a lawyer to prepare your will? The answer is no. You could also write on a napkin or use an online program if it meets your state’s legal requirements. However, a family law attorney will know the laws in your state and be able to better protect your assets with strategies such as living trusts. A family law attorney may be worth your bills!
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Sweet House Reborns® is a mom-owned and operated, eco-inspired and environmentally responsible reborn baby doll online store. Our mission is to keep our children safe and happy while supporting our sustainable fingerprint on the planet.
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