How Important is a Will?

Retirement & Investing
on October 18, 2012

Having a Last Will and Testament is one of the most important things you can do to protect your family in the event of your death. A wProteill determines how your assets are allocated, how your personal property is distributed, and ensures that all of your final wishes are met.

No one wants to create a will. It is hard to think about the inevitable, and most people will delay the process, sometimes until it is too late. Creating a will, however, does not have to be a difficult task and can easily be created in the comfort of your home.

There are many DIY sites on the internet that will help you create a will. These sites will ask you specific questions and you input your answers. Once all answers are completed, a will is generated for you to print and have notarized.

A will is also very important when there are minor children in the home. Parents must establish someone as the legal guardian for their children in the event of their death. If this is not placed in a legal document prior to any event, the children could become wards of the state until such a time that a family member can be located to assume custody.

People that pass away without a legal will and have assets place a large risk on their families. The state can come in and distribute the assets accordingly, after first taking their share of the estate. This can simply be avoided by creating a legitimate will.

When you create a will at home, you should know the following:

• A will is not legal until it is signed in front of a notary public and the notary places their stamp on the document.

• A will is not legal unless it has two or three witness signatures. These witnesses must be present when you sign the will in front of the notary, and they must also sign the document. You must verify with your specific state as to the required amount of witnesses needed for the document to be legal.

• Some states require that you file the will with the court once it has been signed.

• Make sure that you keep a copy in a safe place at home. Do not keep in a safe deposit box. If you pass away and the Will may not be accessible for up to a year.

• Review your will on a yearly basis. Assets change, children grow up, and personal belongings increase over time.

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