Having a will is one of the most important things you can do for your family. Not only can a will legally protect your spouse, children, and assets, it can also spell out exactly how you would like your funeral arraignments handled.
1) You decide how your estate will be distributed. A will is a legally-binding document that lets you determine how you would like your estate to be handled upon your death. If you die without a will, there is no guarantee that your intended desires will be carried out, even if you have it written down. Having a will helps minimize any family fights about your estate that may arise, and also determines the “who, what, and when” of your estate. Having a will can help keep your family closer together once you are gone.
2) You decide who will take care of your minor children. A will allows you to make an informed decision about who should take care of your minor children. Absent a will, the court will take it upon itself to choose among family members or a state-appointed guardian. Having a will allows you to appoint the person or persons you want to raise your children or, better, make sure it is not someone you do not want to raise your children, or someone you have never even heard of.
3) To avoid a lengthy probate process. Contrary to common belief, all estates must go through the probate process, with or without a will. Having a will, however, speeds up the probate process and informs the court how you’d like your estate divided. Probate courts serve the purpose of “administering your estate”, and when you die without a will, the court will decide how to divide estate without your input, which can also cause long, unnecessary delays, and substantial costs for your loved ones.
Remember tomorrow is not promised. To avoid the added stress on families during an already emotional time, it may be wise to meet with an estate planning lawyer to help you draw up a basic estate plan at the minimum, before it’s too late.
Talk to an Attorney About the Reasons You Should Have a Will
There are more than three reasons to have a will, but it can be overwhelming to actually draft a will. Knowing Oklahoma laws is key. Contact me today to set up an appointment so that I can help you craft your wishes into a legal document.During our appointment we will also talk about the benefits of having a Trustin place also, but depending on your circumstances it may not be needed. If you decide on having a Trust prepared also your family and estate may be able to skip the probate process.