Why You Should Have a Will
Your will directs how, and to whom, your estate will be distributed upon your death. If you die without a will (“intestate”), your assets are distributed according to Texas state law. If you die with a will (“testate”), you have the ability to choose the Executor or Personal Representative to handle your affairs. A will can legally protect your spouse, children, and assets, and it can also relieve the burden of grieving loved ones from a complicated probate process. Keep reading to find out the top three reasons for why you should have a Texas Family Law attorney draft a will for you.
1.To Decide How Your Estate is Distributed
Unless you have a will created that includes your plans for your assets and estate, it will be impossible for anyone to distribute your property exactly as you desire. Additionally, without a will, it is very likely that there will be litigation over your estate – especially if you own real estate or other difficult to divide assets at the time your death. If you own a business, a will can even help to ensure there will be a smooth transition of those assets.
If you die without a will, it is possible that a portion, or the entirety of your estate may pass to someone you did not intend. By creating a will and appointing an executor, the executor will be empowered to make sure your affairs are in order, and your wishes are followed after death.
2.To Avoid Lengthy, Costly Probate Process
Probate is the process by which the courts distribute assets and property, either in absence of, or under the direction of a will. Contrary to popular belief, all estates will go through the probate process, with or without a will. However, having a will can make the process quicker and more organized for your heirs and family. When your explicit bequeaths and assignment of your assets are known, you can save your family some of the tension that may come with a court battle to divide your assets.
3.To Provide for Your Children
If you have minor children, having a will becomes more important than ever. You may assume that the correct family member will step up to take care of your children, but if that person is not the next of kin, without a will the State may designate someone you may not approve of as guardian for your children. To ensure your children are raised by the person of your preference, consider having a will drafted before it is too late.
Additionally, as life changes – be it through divorce, remarriage, or other major life events, it is a good idea to revisit your will periodically to ensure that your will is current with your desires and assets. Even if your estate is small, it is a good idea to have a will drafted to make sure things are taken care of after you pass. While it can be difficult to consider death, it is important to remember that tomorrow is never promised. In order to avoid added stress when a familial death occurs, it is wise to meet with a Texas Family Law attorney, who can help you draw up an estate plan that will protect your estate and heirs.
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Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC | Houston, Texas Child Custody Lawyers
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