Writing a will is often seen as an unpleasant
task but it's something that everyone needs to do. It's been
estimated that about seventy percent of adults have yet to
make a will- no one likes to think about their own death,
but writing a last will and testament is an important step
and a good way to make sure that your estate is handled according
to your wishes. No matter how large or small your estate,
you should consider these things before you write your will.
There are a lot of options these days when it comes to making
a last will and testament. The choice you make will depend
in part on how complex your estate is. A DIY kit is fine for
those that have a simple estate, as are the will kits that
can be filled out online. These kits ask simple questions
of you and the will you get is based on your answers. The
more high-quality do-it-yourself kits don't use an auto system
and they will check your will for errors before it's provided
to you. However, if your estate is large or otherwise complex,
it would be wise for you to enlist the help of a professional.
You will also need to name an executor to your estate. This
person will be responsible for distributing your assets and
paying your debts after you die, and they will be responsible
for your burial costs and inheritance taxes. Being an executor
is a big role and you need to pick someone you can trust.
If you are married, your spouse is usually your executor,
but you should have a backup plan in case they cannot fulfill
If you have minor children, you'll need to appoint a guardian.
For married couples, the surviving spouse is usually named
the guardian, but if both parents die at the same time, there
needs to be another guardian in place. For unmarried couples
this is especially important, as if one partner dies the other
does not automatically get custody of the children.
If you have possessions that have great sentimental value
and you want to leave them to someone specific, you need to
outline this in your will. Be clear about the item and who
you want it to go to, whether it's a piece of jewelry, a favorite
painting, or even your home.
A will is only valid if you know where it is and if it is
intact. It should be stored safely, and you should make copies
to pass along to your executor and those you choose to be
guardians for your children. It is also not valid unless it's
signed, dated and witnessed according to state law.
Download here, it's free:
WILL AND TESTAMENT - Version 1
WILL AND TESTAMENT - Version 2