Most people do not like thinking about death. They do not like thinking about their own death and probably dread thinking about people they love dying even less. This could be one reason that at least 55% of Americans have not taken the time to write a will. Even if you do not think you need to have a will, you should consider writing one. This is especially important if you have children. Once you have written your will, experienced lawyers say that you need to review it and revise it once every three to five years.
Tips for Writing Your Will
- Educate yourself about the process. You are not expected to know the ins and outs of estate planning and will writing but you can learn. Different states have different rules regarding drafting a will so you should look into what the rules are in your state. If you move after you write your will, you will need to revise tit and make sure the new will works with the laws of your new state. The new laws may include rules about who can and cannot be witnesses or executors.
- Find experienced lawyers to help you. You may think there is no need to get advise from experienced lawyers. Even if you think your will is straightforward and easy to write up, this is an important legal document. You should take advantage of their expertise. Again, if you have people who depend on you, the best way to make sure they are provided for in the way you want is to make sure your will is written as clearly as possible. Wills are very complicated and precise documents. You need an expert to make sure it is all done exactly as it is required to be done. The more specific you are in your will, the more likely you are to prevent the flighting between family members that will happen after you pass on.
- Think about everything, including the “small stuff.” Sure, you want your estate, if you have one, to go to your spouse of children. Maybe you have stocks, or property, a life insurance policy or other big accounts. All of this should be dealt with in your will. You should also consider making note of what you want to happen to your possessions that mean a lot to you You can put items into a trust so that your sentimental items will go to the people you want them to and not to the state.
- Pick the people who know about your will and will execute it carefully. Select trustworthy people to carry out your last wishes. That may seem like a no-brainer but you should think long and hard about who you think will do the best job of taking care of your affairs. When put into the wrong hands, your estate can be made into a mess. Have a backup in the sad event that the person you select dies before you do.
- Do not hide it away. It may be difficult enough for your family and friends to execute your will after you die, do not make the hunt for it, too. Everyone who will be a part of executing your will should know where it is. Talk to the law firm you have write it up about storing it in a safe location until it is needed.
No one expects or wants to need the help of experienced lawyers. Most of us will need one at some point in time or another. We may need a divorce lawyer, at least 10% of the United States population is divorced. We may need the services of specialized attorneys such as family law attorneys.
Do as much as you can to prepare things before you die. No, it is not pleasant to think about dying. It is harder to think about losing people you love. It will make it a lot easier on the people who love you if you have what you want to be done with your belongings written down. Make your will as clear as you possibly can. When you die, your family and friends should not be required to make any guesses about what you “would have wanted.”