Importance of a Will
Are you wondering what the importance of a will is? There are a few things that you should know when planning your estate.
Importance of a Will | Dying Without a Will
Depending on your situation, dying intestate, or without a last will and testament, can create anything from a minor inconvenience to a significant and expensive conflict. New York State laws will govern the distribution of everything you leave behind. In these situations, what usually happens is that someone will get something you didn’t want them to get. As bad as that sounds, it can get much worse.
Importance of a Will | Where Your Assets Go
In some cases, individuals do not need a will. If you’ve set up your estate and named your children as beneficiaries, or have established joint accounts with your children, you may not need a will. If you accept the intestacy laws of New York State, you may not need a will.
However, you may want an arrangement other than what the New York State intestacy laws set down. In New York, If you have a spouse and children and die without a will, the spouse gets the first $50,000 of your estate plus 50 percent of anything remaining, with the other half divided among your children. Any other arrangement requires a will that states your wishes clearly.
Importance of a Will | Avoid Legal Battles
When there are important assets at stake, with several individuals claiming rights to the same things, it can result in very long court battles. These battles can become so expensive that the asset in question barely covers the costs of the legal fees. A properly prepared and executed will can avoid or reduce the legal fighting.
You might want a will even if you don’t have significant assets. No matter the size of your estate, if you have young children you will not want your assets to go to the children directly, or even to a guardianship. Instead, you’ll want to set up a trust so that the assets will appreciate by the time the children are old enough to manage them wisely. Even if you have no assets whatsoever, you might want a will to name the people you wish to take care of your affairs when you die or become incapacitated.
If you want legal guidance while planning your will, please call our Buffalo estate planning attorneys today.