Estate Planning Lawyer
Though you may be considering writing a will for the first time, there may be good reasons for doing so that you’re not aware of, and our estate planning lawyer can walk you through the process. In addition to wills, law firms offer a wide range of estate planning tools that can protect your legacy. We encourage you to come into a law office to meet with an estate planning lawyer to learn more. They do not charge for the initial consultation which can provide you the information you need to decide what estate planning tools will best suit your needs.
Here are two additional reasons for writing a will that you may not have thought about:
- You can designate who should execute the instructions contained in your will. Without a will or other estate planning, the Probate Court Judge will assign an executor to your estate. Because your final wishes are important, it’s important that the person who administers your estate is someone you trust. A judge will not likely know the people in your life as well as you do. The designated executor may have many tasks to perform based on the complexity of your estate. For instance:
- They may have to file documents regarding your estate with the probate court.
- The will have to locate, identify, and secure your assets.
- They may have to liquidate some or all of your assets in order to pay off your estate’s outstanding debts, including personal and estate taxes.
- They will have to distribute the remaining assets to your designated heirs.
- They may have to manage the assets you bequeathed to your minor children until such time as they reach adulthood or even later according to your instructions.
- A will allows you the opportunity to explain who will not inherit some or all of your assets, and your reasoning behind your choices. Without a will or other estate planning, the Probate Court Judge will likely distribute all of your assets to your surviving spouse (even if you are separated as long as you are not legally separated), and/or equally among your children. A probate lawyer can illustrate the most probable outcome based on your state law and your circumstances. Without a surviving spouse or children, it’s difficult to know how your assets might be distributed and to whom. Having a will in place can avoid these scenarios. In addition:
- Some items and assets cannot be equally divided, such as a car, and so by specifying who should inherit each of your possessions, confusion can be eliminated.
- If you do not want your assets equally divided among your children, you can specify how they should be divided, and your reasoning. A clear explanation in your will makes it less likely that a disgruntled heir (or family member left out of your will) will have grounds for contesting the will.
To learn more about the advantages of planning your estate, contact a lawyer to schedule a free consultation with an estate planning lawyer in Palatine, IL.
Thanks to Bott & Associates for their insight into estate planning and reasons for creating a will.
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