Wills 101: Do You Need One?

You know that you need an estate plan, but what type? If you’re considering writing your own will, there are some considerations that you need to have. If you’re new to estate planning, then it’s always best to talk with a lawyer ahead of time, because he or she can help you with your will. Here are the basics that you need to know about wills.

Creating a Will

When creating a will, you are the testator. You are the one who will state who you want to manage your assets or estate after you pass away. Your estate includes any assets of value. This means that it can include your home, your property, your collections and any other valuable items. In addition, you may include sentimental items into your estate. The person that you name to manage your assets is the executor. He or she will execute your will.

In your will, you not only decide what to do with your assets, but if you have minor children, you can appoint a guardian for your children. If you have minor children, this is something that you have to have. In addition, your will provides you with a way to distribute items to specific people. Those who receive the items or assets are your beneficiaries.

Passing Away Without a Will

If you die and you don’t have a will, you are intestate. What happens next depends on your state. The state’s laws determine how your estate will be settled and who will inherit your estate. Your assets will go through probate, where your property is passed on to your heirs. Without a will, the judge will appoint an administrator. This person will normally be a stranger and will use probate laws to determine who inherits what.

Most people would rather have someone that they trust in charge of their will. Likewise, in some instances, you may not want your assets to pass on to those who may legally be entitled by the state laws. To write your will gives you a lot more control over what happens to your estate.

If you want to have control over what happens to your assets after you pass away, then it is crucial that you have an estate plan. Not only does this provide you with the means to have control, but it can help to guarantee that your family is taken care of. For more information about wills, contact a will lawyer in Chandler, AZ.


Thanks to Citadel Law Firm for their insight into estate planning and the basics of wills.