Showing posts with label Will. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Will. Show all posts

Thursday, July 11, 2024

Digital Assets and Your Will: What You Need to Know

Are you getting ready to prepare your will? Nowadays, with so much of our lives online, it’s crucial to make sure even your digital assets are part of your estate planning. Here's what you need to know about digital assets and how to ensure they are properly handled in your will.

Understanding Digital Assets

Digital assets cover a wide spectrum of online accounts and electronic files that can hold both monetary and sentimental value. These include social media profiles like Facebook or Instagram, email accounts, online banking and investment accounts, cryptocurrency wallets, digital photos and videos, music libraries, and even domain names you own. 

Identifying all your digital assets is the first crucial step in managing your digital estate. Take inventory of every online account and digital file you possess, and think about their significance and how you wish them to be handled. 

For instance, you might want someone to archive your personal photos and videos but delete your social media accounts. Be sure to document instructions clearly and securely share passwords or encryption keys with a trusted executor. 

This ensures that your digital legacy is managed according to your wishes and simplifies the process for your loved ones.

Securing Access to Your Digital Assets

Securing access to your digital assets is paramount for ensuring that everything is managed according to your wishes. Begin by creating an exhaustive list of all digital accounts, including email, social media, banking, and investment accounts. 

Don't forget more unusual items like cryptocurrency wallets, music libraries, and domain names. For each entry, list usernames, passwords, and any two-factor authentication details. This documentation should be stored securely—consider a password manager or an encrypted digital vault. 

Clearly outline your instructions for each asset, such as whether you want accounts memorialized, deleted, or transferred. Appoint a trusted individual as your digital executor and ensure they have access to this information. 

Regularly update this list, as passwords and accounts change over time. By taking these steps, you simplify estate management for your loved ones and ensure that your digital legacy is handled with care and respect.

Choosing a Digital Executor

When it comes to managing your digital assets, selecting the right digital executor is essential. This individual will handle everything from your social media accounts to your cryptocurrency wallets. 

Ideally, they should be tech-savvy and thoroughly familiar with your online footprint. In addition to your main executor, having a specific digital executor ensures that someone with the right skills and knowledge handles your digital estate efficiently. 

Look for someone who understands cybersecurity best practices, which reduces the risk of identity theft during vulnerable times. It's also helpful if your digital executor possesses a clear understanding of your personal wishes regarding each type of digital asset, be it memorializing a social media account, closing down email accounts, or distributing digital currency. 

Don’t forget to officially name your digital executor in your will and provide them with all necessary access details, like usernames, passwords, and two-factor authentication information. 

Keeping this information up-to-date and securely stored means your digital legacy will be managed seamlessly, reflecting your specific wishes and providing peace of mind for your loved ones.

Including Digital Assets in Your Will

Including digital assets in your will requires thoughtful planning and clear instructions. First, make a comprehensive list of all your digital assets—these range from social media accounts, email accounts, and online banking to domains and cryptocurrency. 

Each asset should have specific instructions: Do you want your social media accounts memorialized or deleted? Should your email be accessible to a loved one, or should it be permanently closed? It's vital to express these preferences distinctly in your will. 

Consult an attorney experienced in digital estate planning, like the team at Crews Law Offices, to ensure your directives are legally enforceable. Include information on how to access these assets; provide usernames, passwords, and any required two-factor authentication details, and store this information securely, such as in an encrypted digital vault or password manager. 

Remember, this digital inventory needs to be updated regularly as passwords change and new accounts are created. Appoint a trusted digital executor to manage these tasks, detailed within the legal language of your will. 

By addressing these elements, you not only protect your digital legacy but also make the process smoother for those you leave behind.

Updating Your Will Regularly

Just like with the rest of your estate plan, it's essential to revisit and update your will regularly to capture any changes in your digital asset portfolio. Life evolves, and so does your online presence—new accounts appear, some old ones become obsolete, and the value tied to these assets can change. 

Make it a point to review your digital inventory at least annually or after any significant life events, like the acquisition of assets, changes in relationships, or shifts in your digital estate's overall structure. 

By staying proactive, you can ensure your will accurately reflects your current desires and avoids potential legal hiccups or family conflicts later on. Remember to document updates clearly and inform your digital executor of any changes. 

Consulting with a legal professional specializing in digital estate planning can provide further assurance that your shifts are legally sound. 

Keeping your will current safeguards your digital legacy, making the transition smoother for your loved ones and honoring your wishes precisely.

Seeking Legal Guidance

Navigating the intricacies of adding digital assets to your will can be overwhelming, but seeking legal guidance can make the journey smoother and more secure. 

Imagine you're having a chat with a knowledgeable friend—except this friend is a legal expert in digital estates. A seasoned attorney can offer tailored advice, ensuring your digital and traditional assets are comprehensively covered. 

They help you grasp the legal nuances, such as how state laws treat digital assets and the enforceability of your wishes. By discussing your specific scenario, they can guide you through creating a detailed inventory of your digital assets, complete with instructions for each one, like memorializing or deleting social media profiles. 

Attorneys also aid in drafting a will that’s airtight, reducing potential disputes or legal challenges down the road. They'll also advise you on securely storing access details—think usernames, passwords, and two-factor authentication—so your digital executor has a clear, legal roadmap to follow. 

Consulting with a legal professional won't just simplify the process; it can offer peace of mind, ensuring your digital forever is managed just as you envision.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, incorporating digital assets into your estate planning is a vital step in ensuring that your legacy is preserved and managed according to your wishes. 

By taking the time to understand the unique considerations surrounding digital assets and working with a knowledgeable will attorney, you can rest assured that your online presence will be handled with care and respect after you're gone.

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

5 Strategies for Safeguarding Your Assets

Protecting your assets is essential in today's uncertain world. Whether you're saving for retirement, investing in the stock market, or simply looking to secure your financial future, it's crucial to have a plan in place to safeguard your hard-earned money. 

This blog post will discuss five strategies that can help you protect your assets and minimize risk.

Diversify Your Investments

One of the most important strategies for safeguarding your assets is diversifying your investments. By spreading your money across different asset classes, such as stocks, bonds, real estate, and commodities, you can reduce the impact of market volatility on your portfolio. 

Diversification helps protect against losses in one asset class by offsetting them with gains in another. It's important to regularly review and rebalance your investments to ensure they align with your financial goals and risk tolerance.

Establish an Emergency Fund

Having an emergency fund is another key strategy for safeguarding your assets. An emergency fund acts as a safety net in case of unexpected expenses or income loss. 

Aim to save three to six months' worth of living expenses in a separate account that is easily accessible but not tied to your investments. This fund can help you avoid having to dip into long-term savings or rely on credit during times of financial hardship.

Purchase Adequate Insurance

Insurance is a crucial component of asset protection. Make sure you have adequate coverage for health, life, disability, auto, home, and liability insurance. 

Review your policies annually to ensure they still meet your needs and are up to date with any changes in your circumstances. Consider umbrella insurance if you have substantial assets or are at risk for lawsuits that could exceed the limits of standard policies.

Create a Trust or Will

Estate planning is essential for protecting your assets and ensuring they are distributed according to your wishes after you pass away. 

Establishing a trust or will can help minimize estate taxes and avoid probate court delays while providing clear instructions for how you want your assets divided among beneficiaries. 

Consult with an estate planning attorney to create a comprehensive plan that protects both your assets and loved ones.

Buy Gold as a Hedge Against Inflation

Gold has long been considered a safe haven asset and a hedge against inflation. Investing in physical gold bullion or gold-backed exchange-traded funds (ETFs) can help protect the value of your portfolio during economic downturns or periods of high inflation. 

Gold tends to retain its purchasing power over time and often performs well when other asset classes decline in value. Consider adding gold to your investment portfolio as part of a diversified strategy for safeguarding your assets. 

You can find more info online by researching your local gold buyers.

Final Thoughts

Safeguarding your assets requires careful planning and ongoing attention to changes in economic conditions and personal circumstances. 

By diversifying investments, establishing an emergency fund, purchasing adequate insurance, creating an estate plan, and buying gold as a hedge against inflation, you can better protect your wealth and achieve long-term financial security.

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Why You Should Try To Avoid Going to Probate Court

If you’ve had a loved one recently pass away, you’re probably dealing with the process of settling their estate as well as probate court.

Probate court is a system that oversees the management and proper distribution of a person's estate according to their wishes. While this might seem straightforward, it’s common for executors and family members to experience issues with probate.

In fact, it's a complicated process that can take months, sometimes even years, to resolve. Fortunately, by knowing why you should try to avoid going to probate court now, you can set your loved ones up for success in the future.

Here’s what you need to know.

#1: It's Time-Consuming

As mentioned, probate court can be a drawn-out process, as it becomes the court’s responsibility to oversee the distribution of assets, paying off of debts, and resolving of any disputes. 

This can take months, if not years to finalize. But there are ways to reduce your chances of needing this interference. You could establish a trust fund instead. 

You should take advantage of several benefits of trust funds, including bypassing probate court entirely. This is because the assets in the trust are already settled.

#2: It's Expensive

Probate court also comes with fees and expenses that can add up quickly, especially if something happens to prolong the process, such as a family dispute. 

These expenses come from the legal fees, court costs, and other miscellaneous expenses that arise during the probate process. In contrast, setting up a trust only involves the one-time legal fees for drawing up the necessary paperwork.

#3: It's Public

Probate court proceedings are usually open to the public, which means anyone can access your family's personal and financial information. 

This can be a significant invasion of privacy for many families. To avoid this scenario, settle your affairs privately beforehand in the form of a will or trust.

#4: It's Complicated

Another reason why you should try to avoid probate court for your estate is the complex nature of the proceedings. There’s a lot of paperwork involved with probate court proceedings, as well as strict deadlines that executors must meet. 

This can be difficult for family members who may not be savvy with legal jargon or may not have the time and resources necessary to navigate the court system. Detailed wills and trusts leave less room for complications since everything is already organized.

#5: It's Not Personalized

Above all, the court has a set of specific distribution rules, meaning that executors won’t be able to personalize where certain items go on their own. 

As a result, the probate court system can be an impersonal process that doesn't account for the departed loved one’s unique circumstances or wishes. By establishing a trust fund, you have the flexibility to create a customized estate plan that meets your specific needs.

Final Thoughts

The more time and effort you put into your estate plan, the smoother it will be to settle your estate for your loved ones. Probate court is no fun for anyone, and it’s the last thing your family wants to contend with when grieving your passing. 

Speak to a reputable attorney to establish a trust fund and protect your family's future.

Sunday, January 28, 2024

How To Plan Out What To Leave With Your Inheritance

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio

If you are wealthy, inheritance can be life-changing for your next of kin. That is why you must have everything arranged so your family gets all your inheritance. It is an opportunity to change their life so make sure you do it right.

There are many benefits to inheritance as it can help pay off a mortgage, buy a new house, finish off education, or invest for their retirement. 

The options are endless with inheritance. However, people will believe that inheritance will last forever. 

However, your next of kin is unable to do that unless you have already sorted your inheritance. Let's look at how you can set up your will for your family.

Create A List Of Who You Want To Receive Your Inheritance

Creating a list for your will is very important. You also need to pick an executor and this needs to be a family member or friend. Make sure you make them aware that they are the executor as well, once you have picked your executor. You need to work out who will be included in your will and these are known as beneficiaries.

It shouldn’t take you too long and should be those who you are close to. Firstly, your partner should be included in the will and after that, it needs to be your children, brothers and sisters. 

If you want to leave some to your friends or a charity then you can but in most cases, it will be close family members.

Take Note Of All Your Assets

The next step is to make a note of all your assets and this will take much longer. Start easy by working out your savings, investment money, and valuable objects that you may have. 

It could be heirlooms or jewelry pieces. Once you have done that, you need to work out the more technical part of your will.

The next step is to work out your pension and who you wish to give this to. Something else you will need to consider is your business, that's if you own one. You also need to consider your investments if you have any. 

That includes stocks & shares, bonds, and funds. Property is the final asset on your list. If you only own your home then that is easy however, if you have multiple properties, you need to include those as well.

Think About How You Are Splitting Your Money and Assets

Figuring out who you will leave your will to is the difficult part. It is completely up to you. However, there are five different types of legacy you can leave. There is; a specific bequest, pecuniary bequest, residuary bequest, reversionary bequest, or a trust.

Specific Bequest

A specific bequest is when you are looking to give a specified item to an individual. That could be anything such as a piece of jewellery, a car, a house or any other type of asset. It could also be a family heirloom such as luxury cushion covers, a war medal, an engagement ring, furniture or anything that means something to your family.

Pecuniary Bequest

That is when a fixed sum of money is agreed however inflation can affect the value of this money. Therefore, the longer this amount of money is not given, the lower its value will be when the time comes around. 

It leads to people investing their money so it counters inflation. If you want to give people money, it is better to give them an investment.

Residuary Bequest

A residuary bequest is where you give all of your property or some of the property. It is after all your debt, expenses and your other specific bequests.

Reversionary Bequest

A reversionary bequest is the next person who is in line for the gifts if the person you originally proposed has died before you.


This grants access to the named trustees to control your assets on behalf of the other trustees. In some cases, you may have to specify which beneficiary goes to which trustee.

Finally, Check If You Have To Pay Inheritance Tax

Inheritance tax only has to be paid when the value of your property is less than £325,000. You also don’t need to pay inheritance tax if they are giving all property above £325,000 to your spouse. 

The other reason, and final reason, is that you don’t have to pay inheritance if you leave all your property above £325,000 to a charity.

Saturday, July 30, 2022

What You Need to Include in Your Will

Having a will is something many people put off because they think the process is complicated and unimportant. However, having a legally binding choice is essential.

It doesn't just protect your assets and property and ensures that your loved ones are taken care of after you've passed away. A will proves who you want as the executor of your estate and who you want to receive your property once you are gone. 

There are several things to include in a will, but the most important ones are listed below.

Name and Address of Your Executor

The executor of your estate is the person who is responsible for taking care of your property and assets after you have passed away. 

Their responsibility is to handle all the legalities and paperwork involved in this process. The executor will also be in charge of distributing your property as per the terms listed in your will.

Property to Be Distributed

The most important part of a will is where you list down what you want to distribute after you have passed away. This includes your house, bank accounts, money, jewelry, stocks, bonds, etc. 

You can also list other non-monetary assets such as paintings or furniture that are important to you. You should keep items that have sentimental value out of this list because they may not be able to gain monetary value, but they still hold great importance in the lives of those close to you.

Guardians for Any Minor Children

If any minor children depend on you, you should name a guardian to look after them until they reach adulthood. You can also include a secondary guardian if the first one cannot care for matters when needed. 

If no minors are involved, it's best not to have this clause as it may confuse you later on if there's a dispute over guardianship rights after your death and people start claiming they were named guardians in your will.

Personal Information

The first thing you need to include in your will is your personal information. The document should consist of the deceased's name, the date and the place of birth, and their social security number or passport number. 

This information is needed for identification and to help determine future taxes or estate liabilities. You also need to include where you want your body to be buried or cremated and who will be in charge of planning it if you want a funeral service. 

Talk to a will attorney to make sure you include enough personal information in your will.

Knowing your options when it comes to planning your will is essential. It's a good idea to consult a lawyer if you have any questions about the process or how to go about it. They can also advise you on protecting your assets and ensuring that everything runs smoothly after your death.

Friday, April 29, 2022

Can You Sell Your Parent's Home if They Died Without a Will?

If your parent has passed away and they didn’t have a will, you may be wondering if you can sell their home and get the profit yourself. 

Unfortunately, there are many factors that may make this difficult or impossible, so you should do your research before selling your parent’s home if they did not have a will. 

Read on to learn more about your options in selling your family home.

What the Executor of Your Parents' Estate Should Do

The executor of your parent's estate is responsible for settling their debts and distributing their assets to beneficiaries. 

The executor needs to pay any outstanding debt from your parents' estate and selling assets from their estate can help with these payments. To sell an asset from your parent's estate, you need a legal authority called probate. 

Probate allows you to act on your parents’ behalf as their representative in court. The probate process varies depending on where you live.

If You Didn’t Live in Your Parents’ Home

In order to prove that you are living in your parents’ home without permission and thus have legal title, you must have openly occupied and used it as your own for five years or more prior to making an offer on it. 

The process can take several months to complete, but once ownership is transferred into your name, you can then legally sell it. 

If you do not wish to live in or keep your parents’ property, you can sell it immediately after paying off any taxes and mortgages owed on the property.

If There Are No Heirs to Your Parents’ Home

An heir with an interest in your parent’s home may ask you to sell it for them. If there are no heirs or they decline, you can choose whether to sell it yourself or try to find someone else who wants to buy it. 

If you don’t have time or expertise, consider hiring an appraiser, estate-sale company, real estate agent, and attorney. Some attorneys might even offer package deals where they handle everything for a fixed fee.

Hire an Estate Lawyer

If you’re not sure what to do with your parent’s house, it might be tempting to just sell it right away. But selling a home without a will could lead to some complications, so your best bet is to consult local estate lawyers before you make any rash decisions. 

An attorney can help you navigate everything from taxes and probate to how much control over decision-making rights your other family members have.

If your parent died without a will, it’s important to know what you can and can’t do with their property in order to avoid serious legal consequences. Keep this information in mind as you determine the best next steps in selling your family home.

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

How to Prepare to Pass On Your Legacy and Assets

It is a sad fact of life that we all must one day pass on. Planning for your legacy and assets is important to ensure you have the right people in place to carry out your wishes. 

If you're not sure where to start, this article offers some advice about preparing for passing on what matters most.

Consider Leaving a Will

A will is a legal document stating not just how your assets should be distributed after you pass on, but also discusses animal care and even child guardianship. 

It is an important document that will allow your friends and family to adequately mourn your death without having to worry about all the loose ends because you would have already dealt with that for them.

Create an Estate Plan and Gather Important Files

An estate plan outlines what happens to your assets and property when you die, including appointing the executor of your will and naming beneficiaries for insurance policies, bank accounts, and retirement plans

This allows for the smooth transfer of your assets and often prevents unnecessary taxes upon your loved ones. Make copies of all vital records such as birth certificates, marriage licenses, and passports so they can easily be retrieved by family members in case there's a need for them later.

Provide Information About Next of Kin

If possible, provide contact details for close family members who may not be aware they are listed as emergency contacts with financial institutions or other service providers where personal information must be provided to them upon request.

Consider Leaving a Letter of Instruction

A letter of instruction is typically left for family members to let them know what they can expect after you pass on, including how your assets are managed and any information that may help ease the transition into their new lives without you. 

Discussing with beneficiaries about who will inherit which accounts is important, so as to remove any confusion about where each account belongs once it comes time to transfer funds or close accounts.

Discuss With Your Legal Advisor the Best Options for You

Discussing your options with an estate planning attorney is important to ensure you have the right plan in place that suits your needs. Also, creating an accurate list of all physical and financial assets can help family members access accounts, transfer money, or claim property without issue after you pass on. 

Another option is to set up a trust where certain assets are transferred to the trustee, and it dictates who administers the afore-mentioned assets for the beneficiary.

It is important to prepare for the passing on of your unique legacy and assets. Whether you have dependents or not, it is important to be prepared for when tragedy strikes. You may be and feel young, but we never know when it is our time to move on.

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Estate and Tax Planning: Where to Get Started

Estate planning isn't just for the super-rich. Almost everyone has an estate, whether large or small. Your estate includes personal items such as cars, property, jewelry, bank accounts, and investments

But estate and tax planning are more than just protecting your assets. It's about preparing for illness, disability, passing on, and planning for your heir's future.

Tax and estate planning can be a complicated road to travel, and it can be daunting knowing where to start. Here are a few tips on where to get started with estate and tax planning.

What is Estate Planning?

Estate planning is making a plan in advance and taking steps by naming the people, charities, or organizations you want to receive your assets after you die. Estate planning makes it easier for your wishes to be carried out at a later date.

What is Tax Planning?

Tax planning involves taking a hard look at your financial situation to reduce your tax liability. Tax planning is crucial to estate planning because your taxes can have a significant impact on how much you pass to your heirs after you die.

There are three related federal transfer taxes: gift tax, generation-skipping tax, and estate tax. Depending on the value of your estate, all of these taxes can affect the amount you leave your beneficiaries. You must use professional tax planning to ensure your beneficiaries are well cared for after you pass on.

Getting Started With Estate and Tax Planning

Your estate planning will change as your needs, financial situation, and family change. From the time you become a legal adult, start working, accumulating assets and investments, you should begin your estate and tax planning. Use these steps to get started.

Up-to-date Beneficiary Designations

Even if you're single and early in your career, you need to designate a beneficiary for your 401(k) and life insurance policy. Update your beneficiaries as your life changes and your family grows.

Health Care Proxy

A health care proxy allows someone to make health care decisions on your behalf if you can't do so yourself.

A Living Will

A living will allows you to leave instructions for the end-of-life treatment, such as non-resuscitation or life-sustaining treatment.

Durable Power of Attorney

A durable power of attorney allows someone else to make financial decisions on your behalf.

A Will

If you're early in your career and have no assets, you may not need a will, but a will is crucial when you own a home or other properties where you don't have a beneficiary named. Finding the right will lawyer who understands your particular issues can put you in a good place so you won't be stressed or worried.

Guardian for Your Children

It's essential to your estate planning to appoint a guardian for your children if both parents die or if you're a single parent with sole custody.

It's never too early or too late to begin estate and tax planning. Using an attorney who offers innovative solutions for tax and estate planning is the best way to secure your family's future after you pass on.

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

5 Reasons Why You Should Have a Will

Creating a will is a crucial consideration that can save your loved ones from many unfavorable situations. It gives an easy time for the people you leave behind when you die. Some people often fail to write a will earlier enough, which leads to many complications. Below are reasons why you should create a will.

Reduced Disputes

The will gives a clear image of what should happen with your money and property. There will be disputes among your loved ones because the will states who should inherit after you. If you don't write a will, some people can move to court, seeking to inherit your property against your wish.

The law can decide how to pass on the estate, and this can be unfair to some of your family or partners who had the right to inherit your property. If you find yourself in a situation where you've been deprived of your right of ownership, you can seek help from a will attorney to handle the case for you in court.

Protects Your Business

A will protects your business against individuals who may have no right over it. It shows who should take over your company when you're gone. It could be your family members, friends, or business partners.

Failure to write a will has been a major contributing factor to the collapse of many family businesses because those who get ownership rights often end up mismanaging it. You can choose the right person to take over your business in the will.

Nominate a Guardian for Your Children

You've been taking care of your children when you're alive, but when you're gone, it may be challenging for your kids to survive if you do not write a will.

A will shows that you've left something for your kids, and whoever becomes your children's guardian has a right to access your property to take care of your children.

Identify a Property Manager

When you leave a will for your kids to inherit your property, it should also indicate a property manager who should be an adult. The person is responsible for ensuring that the property is well-managed to avoid misuse that could lead to your business's collapse.

Decide Who Inherits Your Stuff

A will shows the right person to take over your assets when you die. If you die before creating a will, your state law rules out who to take over your property, or it'll be distributed among your descendants. It could be your spouse, children, parents, friends, or mentors.

Some people may take advantage of the situation and claim your property against your wish. This can be unfair to your close associates who'd have taken over the estate.

Ensure you close all gaps concerning your will when you're still alive. You do not want to leave frustrations to your family, friends, or business partners. It'd be best to work with a professional who understands how a will is written.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Creating a Will: What Everyone Tends to Overlook

Creating a will is something everyone should do at some point, regardless of the level of financial assets involved. Money, property, and real estate are the common primary considerations when deciding how items should be divided upon an individual's death, but there may be a few other considerations most people do not evaluate. Death can create legal confusion for those left behind, and those who die intestate will have all personal property divided according to the laws of the particular state. A will is a legal method of circumventing that mandated division.


In most states, all personal property is automatically transferred to the surviving spouse at the time of death. Families that include duly entitled children from previous marriages may need to update personal wills regularly to avoid legal contention after an unexpected death. Financial asset transfer can be assigned by the primary individual during the will process, instead of leaving the courts to make the decision later. A will can be contested in court, but overturning a will is different from suing for entitled assets, and usually more difficult. Savings and investment growth should be considered when making the will, as these financial instruments tend to fluctuate in value. The same is true for real estate property. An intestate court transfer order for financially valued articles can mean a much larger settlement for the plaintiff without a valid will.


Transferring property before death is a good way to avoid taxes and ensure your personal property is divided according to your wishes. This can be a crucial financial decision, regardless of financial asset level. The concept of the death tax is real, and normally applies when not addressed in a valid will. This can also include practically any type of property. Wills should be done with careful prior evaluation, and early transfer often gets left out of the equation. It is always important to allow for all options, especially when it means the inheritor maintains as much total value as possible.


There is more to making a will than merely assigning financial assets. Minor or disabled children are a family asset as well and proper instructions should be left indicating the guardian decedent's wishes on custody. This can include disabled adult children who live at home or with a guardian individual. Do not leave this important issue out when it applies, as the decedent has the legal right to recommend a living situation for either minor children or disabled legal dependents. In addition, this can also apply to the primary will maker with respect to predesignated power of attorney and health care before a health condition could render the primary incompetent. Property is not the only component to a valid will. These dispositions could even include custody of a pet.


Married couples should always have independent wills because it leaves clear designation for property that may be later contested, especially when ex-spouses and step-children are involved. Many married couples have there own personal property, as well as community married property, so it is easy to have a complicated situation. Procrastination is not a good idea either, as the most complicated will cases come when the decedent was not prepared and no acceptable personal will can be located. Accidents happen all of the time, so being prepared is always best.

It is not necessary to retain an attorney to prepare a valid will. Even in simple situations, a will can be prepared with one of the many available do-it-yourself will kits, including instructions on notarization of the document. As long as it is properly notarized, it can even be written on scratch paper when acceptable. It may be a good idea to check into purchasing a fire proof safe before or shortly after making the will. If there is only one document, a SafeWorld a division of Dial locksmith may be the safest protection device and it always at the individual's disposal. Fire proof safes from Edmonton are also excellent for protecting other legal instruments and significant amounts of cash, deeds, and ownership documents. Wills should be re-evaluated each year at tax time, and potentially each quarter for those individuals with significant wealth who monitor growth on a daily basis.

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