We live in uncertain times. The COVID-19 pandemic presents a disruption to normal life and a real danger to many people, especially those who are ill or elderly.
While you take steps to protect yourself, your family, and your community, make sure you also think of the future by planning your will or trust. When you have a legally binding will or trust when you pass away, there will be less confusion and your assets will go where you want them to go. If you don’t have a will when you pass:
- State law decides where your assets go (a status known as “dying intestate”)
- If you have a spouse or children, your assets typically will go to them
- If not, things become more complicated
This article focuses on how your will can help you.
Stop Intestate Succession and Keep Control
The state takes over when you don’t have a will or trust. Most people have more specific plans for their assets that would not be carried out if the state decided where your property, belongings, and money will go. Friends, neighbors, significant others (for unmarried partners), schools, and charities are just some of the beneficiaries that would not receive anything in an intestate succession. Keep control of your belongings and assets when you draft a legal will. Don’t forget, an experienced lawyer can help (socially distant options are available with Aldrich Legal Services).
What Your Will Decides Beyond Your Property
Knowing what will happen to your property is important. However, your will provides direction for several other aspects of your life, including:
- Naming an executor for your estate (person responsible for administering to your wishes)
- Names guardians for any children
- Decides what happens to the property of the children
- Forgive debts
Other documents such as a living trust can help you distribute your property, but only a will can fulfill the above obligations.
Your Will Reduces Family Drama
No one will need to consider what you “would have wanted.” Your wishes will be clear in your will.
Many people can become emotional after losing a loved one. Having a detailed will helps provide clarity and reduce tension between family members during a difficult time. Think of your will as a plan that will help your family take care of details so they can properly mourn.
Getting Legal Advice During Stay at Home Orders
Creating your end of life plan is never easy. With COVID-19 and the current stay at home order, these plans can become even more complicated. Here at Aldrich Legal Services, we want to help. We can connect with you virtually to help you walk through drafting your will or trust. We can get it all set up for when the social distancing order has been lifted.