Everyone needs a will! A will is an important estate planning document that is used to decide what happens to your assets after your die. But, there’s more to a will than the distribution of assets.
A will can help survivors in a number of ways, including:
1. Appointing an executor
With a will, you are able to appoint an executor (trusted helper.)
- It is a good idea to appoint an executor who is organized, keeps good financial records, and is able to communicate well.
- This trusted helper will handle a variety of tasks such as paying last bills, gathering and protecting assets, distributing assets to beneficiaries, and filing last tax returns.
- The trusted helper is in charge of submitting your will to probate court in order to have your will validated.
2. Distributing your assets
Your will is a mini instruction book that explains how your assets will be distributed
- If you have a revocable living trust, the beneficiary of your will is your trust.
- If any assets are not titled in your trust, your will is used in the probate process transfer assets into your trust.
3. Choosing a legal guardian for your children
Your will lists the guardian that will care for your children after your death
- It is best to choose a guardian who will raise your children as you would.
- The ideal guardian is someone who loves your children, is responsible with money, and is able to give lots of love and care to your children.
- You are able to decide if the appointed guardian is responsible for the assets that are left to help care for your children.
If you want to create a will or have questions about a will, consult with an experienced estate planning attorney.