Do I Really Need to Contact an Estate Planning Lawyer?
Many younger people assume they don’t even have an estate worth dividing up and sharing with their loved ones after they’ve passed. Fortunately, they couldn’t be further from the truth. No matter what kind of assets you own, you need to have a solid plan in place for your investments, collections – and even debts – in case of emergency.
As a wills lawyer in Bergen County, NJ from a firm like Kaplan Law Practice, LLC can explain, it’s always important to plan for your future, even if you think you don’t really own that much. Whether you’re rich or poor, young or old, accidents can happen, and you won’t want your loved ones stressing out unnecessarily if they’re already dealing with grief.
What Happens if I Don’t Have a Will?
Unfortunately, many people die without creating a formal will. In fact, it happens all the time. That doesn’t make it a good option. When you die without a will, you still have assets that need to be divided up amongst your family and friends: Your money and anything else you may own doesn’t just magically disappear along with you. Instead, the state will decide what happens to your assets.
Leaving it up to the state isn’t always the best outcome. In order to distribute the contents of your estate, the court appoints a representative to handle to proceedings and decide who gets what. Usually, this representative is a close family member, but like literally every family, there are some family members you might not agree with. For example, that evil twin brother you haven’t seen in years shouldn’t be calling the shots with your estate – but the court might rule in his favor.
On the other hand, you might think that you don’t care what happens to your estate after you pass away. You might think that your assets are so minor they won’t cause any kind of legal difficulty after your death. Or you might think that you’ll give all your money away to the charity upon your death.
Instead of just brushing off the important issues of your estate planning, you should consider what your family and friends will be going through: They’ll be grieving your loss, and they’ll be completely adrift without any solid instructions. Wills are as much for the living as they are for the deceased, and if you have any ideas about who should (or shouldn’t) receive your assets – including charity – you’re going to need to lay down ground rules with a will.
You’ll need a will to make sure your wishes are honored, and to prevent any kind of arguing and infighting. If you want to leave money to charity, it has to be in the will. If you want to exclude that evil twin, it has to be in the will. And if you want your family and friends to be able to focus on their grief, instead of a legal headache, you have to write up a will.
Reach out to an Estate Planning Lawyer Today
Age is no reason to avoid planning your estate. Reach out to a wills lawyer to start thinking seriously about your future.