5 Reasons Why You Should Prepare A Will Now

Do you have assets like cash and property that contribute to a positive net worth? Do you actually care who gets them when the inevitable happens?

If your answer to both questions is a yes, then you must prepare a will while there’s still time.

It’s unfortunate how some people dismiss estate planning as something that only the wealthy must do. What they fail to realize immediately is that their affairs also need to be settled and their assets distributed, no matter how small.

Even more unfortunate is the fact that many middle-aged Americans still don’t have a will. It’s also possible that many senior citizens haven’t even discussed with an elder law attorney the importance of having one prepared.

If you are one of the many Americans who haven’t drafted a will just yet, here are five reasons why you should, regardless of whether you have kids or not.

1. You Can Name Your Own Executor

Preparing a will allows you to appoint a person you trust to act as executor, who will manage your entire estate and do things like pay your bills and taxes and distribute your assets, among other things.

Without a will, the court will be the one to appoint an executor, possibly someone you don’t trust enough to manage your estate. Only by preparing a will yourself can prevent this from happening.

2. You Can Distribute Your Assets The Way You Want It

As stated above, a will distributes your assets accordingly. Create one now, and you’ll have complete control over who gets what.

While you’re obliged to follow inheritance laws in your state that may compel you to leave to your spouse a certain percentage of the assets you acquired during your marriage, you still have the right to leave specific assets to people of your choosing. Name them clearly in a will, and those people will receive whatever it is you’re bequeathing them.

3. You Can Nominate A Guardian For Your Kids

Parents are always worried about what would become of their minor children if death suddenly comes for them.

Preparing a will can relieve you of this concern, as you can use the document to nominate a person whom you trust enough to take care of your kids when you pass on.

As with the appointment of an executor, the court will take it upon itself to name a guardian for your underage kids if you die without a will. Create a will now if you don’t even want to think about the possibility of the court naming the wrong person as guardian for your kids

4. Everything Will Go Smoothly

You’ve probably seen enough movies and TV shows that feature a lot of drama about relatives squabbling over the assets of a relative who just died and left a fortune.

While what is shown on screen is mostly exaggerated for dramatic effect, people do fight over inheritance, especially when the assets left behind are considerable, and there’s no will. It’s not uncommon for an estate without a will to go through protracted legal battles about who rightfully gets what.

There will be no such drama if you have prepared a will. It will be ironclad and save maybe for a few technicalities or glitches, the whole thing will likely go smoothly and be sorted out as quickly as possible.

5. You’ll Have Peace of Mind

A will is meant to be followed to the letter. Once you have prepared one, you will have peace of mind knowing that all your wishes will be respected and carried out when the time comes.

The importance of a will cannot be stressed enough. If possible, don’t do DIY estate planning. Talk to a legitimate estate planning attorney instead to ensure that everything about your will is in order.

About Lauren Summers

Lauren Summers is the Content Marketing Strategist for Miller, Miller & Canby, one of the most respected law firms in Montgomery County, and the Washington, DC metropolitan area. The firm focuses on five core areas of practice: Land Development, Real Estate, Litigation, Business and Tax, and Trusts and Estates Law. In her spare time, she reads books and plays board games with her husband and two kids.

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