A will, also known as a “last will and testament,” is one of the most important documents that most people will sign. A will protects your family and your property when you die. After your death, a will determines who will manage your estate, who gets your property, and who will be the guardian of your minor children.
Last Will And Testament
Why Is A Will Important?
Many people feel that creating a will is unnecessary or don’t fully understand what a will protects. Although not legally required, a will is a useful tool because it gives you the power to control who gets what. Without a will in place, state laws decide how the estate’s assets will be distributed. To avoid that hassle, it is advisable to have a good estate plan in place.
In addition to a last will and testament, a good estate plan will also contain a living will. A living will defines how things should be carried out if you experience an incapacitating illness or injury. Typically, this type of will expresses your wishes on prolonging your life artificially, or who will be designated to make medical decisions for you. A good estate plan will usually contain both a last will and testament and a living will.
Benefits of a Will
Having a last will and testament is beneficial for many reasons, among them:
- It allows the individual to choose the executor of their estate. The executor is the person who will be responsible for carrying out the wishes contained in the will. If there is no executor chosen, the court will choose one for you, which is what many people seek to avoid
- Having a will helps navigate the probate process. Probate is the court supervised process of disturbing the assets of the deceased. Without a will in place, probate can become very complicated
- A will allows you to designate who will be the guardian of your minor children and who will be the guardian of any property left to minor children. Without a will, the state will decide
- A will allows you to specify your funeral wishes, taking the stress and decision making off of your family
- A will can also designate things that are often overlooked, such as the distribution of assets outside the family or who will be the caretaker of your pet
Writing Or Interpreting A Will – NJ Estate Planning Attorneys
Although writing a will may sound simple at first, it can raise many questions. As with all estate planning, it is best to have a team of experienced attorneys help you. Davison, Eastman, Muñoz, Paone, P.A can assist in in breaking down the details and simplifying the estate planning process. A will is an important step in the estate planning process and can help your family avoid unnecessary stress and conflict when you die. Our attorneys can also assist family members in executing a will or estate plan after a loved one’s death.