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August is National Make-A-Will Month

slideshow-will-makersAugust is National “Make A Will Month”. Let’s face it, no one likes to think about the end of their life, but planning ahead is the best gift you can leave for your family. Here are ten reasons why it is important to make a will:

• If you are in a committed relationship with someone, but are not married, your partner may receive nothing in the event of your death.

• If you have some valuable possessions, not deciding who they should go to in the event of your passing could result in family disputes and delays for your loved ones.

• If you do not have any family, you can say who you want to receive your estate.

• If you do not have a will in place, the government could end up with your money, property, and possessions.

• If you have recently had a life changing event such as getting married, moving in with a partner, or having a baby, you may have different priorities with how you would want your affairs handled.

• If you own property you need to have a will. If not, your family may not get their share after you are gone.

• If you have a will but it has not been updated for a while there is a chance that if you were married but are now divorced, your previous spouse may still be entitled to your estate once you have died.

• When you plan ahead and name beneficiaries in your will it will greatly reduce or eliminate taxes one may have to pay on your belongings.

• Having a will in place can help decide who will care for your children if both parents have died.

If you have a will in place it is best to make sure it valid. There are reasons that it could be considered null and void. For instance, if your will was made before you got married, it is no longer enforceable.

According to Peden McLeod, a Attorney with McLeod Fraser & Cone Law Firm, it is very important for parents with young children to have a will. “It is best parents set up a will so their children’s future is secure and set up the way the parents wanted it to be. Otherwise, the estate gets tied up in court and a Judge must decide what is in the child’s best interest”, said McLeod. McLeod went on to explain that a simple will could take as little as fifteen minutes of your time and an hour of his time to arrange and may only cost as little as $150 to $200.

Nearly seventy-five percent of all people do not have a will. The reasons vary from thinking they are too young or that they don’t have enough money for it to matter. Yet it is extremely important to make sure there is a legal document that says to whom your belongings and assets will go- if this is not clear, it can lead to family conflicts and court action that can break relationships apart. Making a will is easy. However, attempting to do it yourself by using available software programs can cause you serious problems. So do yourself and your loved ones a favor this month and let a professional show you how easy it can be to make a will. It’s easy and it will ensure that everything you own will go to the people and places you want them to.

 

Christie Slocum (510 Posts)