How a Will Protects Your Estate and Inheritance Property


Think that because you are not wealthy you don’t need to write a Will? Wrong – A Will is designed to protect the decease’s state and distribute an inheritance according to the will (hence the name) of the decease. As long as you have a home and other property, especially if you have children, you need to have a Will in place to avoid future complications on the distribution of property and other issues that may arise upon your death. Think of it as part of financial planning.

Different states have different inheritance tax laws and requirements. However, when someone dies without a will the state law will be the instrument to decide what happens to the property and other assets. Courts will handle childcare issues as well, if there is no fit parent left or other family issues arise. Family disputes are common after a person dies, including about handling children. If there are no relatives found, the assets will become property of the state where the person lived. Many times, there are issues of unmarried partners, or unmarried partners of the same sex. In many states, an unmarried partner of the same sex will not receive anything after the other person’s death. This is why it is important to have your wishes as to how you want the assets distributed, very clear. This is where a Will comes into place.

States taxes also come into place after someone dies; many times the loved ones see themselves burdened with these taxes, and can be in financial trouble. Sometimes, a Will helps avoid probate period in court if there are very few assets, other times, probate is still necessary depending on the type of assets, specially large assets, and of course, depending on the laws of the particular state. This process can take long – from 6 months to more than a year – and the cost can become expensive. Sometimes, the beneficiary’s inheritance is reduced considerable after probate costs. A Will that is well written and clear, might simplify the process, depending on the state laws and deceased circumstances. However, in some cases a Special Needs Trust might be necessary instead of a Will. There are ways to avoid probate with a Living Trust.

A Will can be simple or more complex. It depends on the amount and type of assets that a person has. A person can do their own Will; however, if there are many legalities involved, such as business partnerships, many assets, and other issues, a lawyer specialized in inheritance law is needed. In the event that a person just needs a basic Will, a person can save hundreds by doing it himself or herself. Either, there is software, and forms available online or office supplies stores. However, if a person has other needs such as large or more complex state, unique circumstances in his family that require a special handling, wants more control on how the inheritance is distributed or handled for generations, and other special requests, then a person needs a lawyer to write a Will.

A Will in place creates peace of mind for the loved ones that are left. It helps them know what your true wishes were at the time, and avoid unnecessary guessing or quarrels. It makes it easy on the issues around the grieving of the people left behind; it brings a sense of organization, and stability.

It is true that family of the decease can contest a Will, but it is up to the courts, and the courts will have the Will of the deceased to go about the issue. There are circumstances on which a Will just will not do, and the need for legal assistance and direction is necessary. Before drafting a Will a person should consider his/her specific circumstances to make sure that a Will is the document that will suffice, or if another type of inheritance document is best suited to his/her needs.

This post was written by

jason – who has written posts on Budget Clowns.
Father of three and married to a lovely women. Always looking for ways to save money, and invest it properly for my children's future.

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