Everyone should have a will, which should cover at least the following seven essential guidelines to avoid difficulties in the future:
After you have taken care of these 7 basic issues, you may wish to consider a few other things:
- Make sure that only one Will exists.
- Determine who you want to serve as your executor.
- Carefully plan for your dependents' future.
- Designate a guardian for young children.
- Assign specific assets or gifts to relatives, friends, or charities.
- Decide which people or organizations should receive the assets of your estate.
- Put in writing the details of your funeral arrangements.
A Will is much more than a simple outline of the final distribution of your property and effects. It's also an occasion to explain your plans for the continued financial support of the people and projects that you have actively supported during your lifetime.
It can also be the time to finally help those people and groups that you always wanted to help out but simply didn't have the resources to do so.
Update your will when necessary
If your financial situation has changed significantly as a result of purchases, investments, inheritances, inflationary increases, business growth, etc., you need to reflect these changes in your Will.
How often you do this will depend on the wording of your original Will and how significant the changes in your circumstances are.
Certainly, anything that is not already specifically detailed in your existing Will should be added now.
Reflecting lifestyle and interest changes in your will
If you haven't examined your Will in several years, you may need to consider whether it adequately covers your current lifestyle, attitudes, and interests.
People realize that if they have retired, changed occupations, or even if their family situation has changed, they may need to reconsider the terms of their Wills.
Many people who were unable financially to help support groups or causes during their lifetimes use the opportunity provided by their Wills to leave a legacy for future generations.
Consider everything carefully - it's your will!
While everyone involved in estate planning agrees with the urgent need to create a Will, remember that it is, in fact, your Will. Consider your own wishes and feelings.
Quite simply, your Will is a very important document, but if it doesn't accurately express your wishes, it isn't well done.
Talk it over with your loved ones. Consider the future. Make a draft. Think again. Your Will is one of the most important, and personal, documents you will ever prepare!
Consult an attorney
Estate planning experts strongly recommend that you seek the advice of an attorney when making out your Will.
Laws about Will-making and taxes can vary from place to place and the specific wording needed to ensure that your wishes are carried out may require the help of a lawyer.
If you are looking for more information on
wills, please visit
www.irwinmitchell.com for expert legal guidance.
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