Nobody likes to think about what will happen if they or a loved one dies. But the fact of the matter is it’s important to confront the issues surrounding your death. One of the most important things to do is to decide what will happen to your estate when you die. Some people may not have anything to pass on to family or friends, but many people own a house or have savings. To make sure that the correct people or organizations inherit your assets, you should draw up a last will and testament. There are many things to consider when you write your will. Here are some tips to get you started.
Know the Law
Before you begin drawing up your will, you need to know how to make sure your will complies with the law in your state. Different states have different requirements for what makes a legal and legitimate last will and testament. 17 states have adopted the Uniform Probate Code to standardize laws on wills, but the law still varies elsewhere. For example, some states require you to have your will signed by witnesses while others don’t. Other things that could affect your will’s legality include whether it’s notarized and whether it’s typed or handwritten.
Decide How You Will Write Your Will
Once you know the law, you need to decide how to write your will. You can do it yourself, without any outside help. You can find books and other resources to guide you, as well as templates to help you. But if you’re unsure, you should hire a lawyer from a company that handles estate planning, such as Maceau Law. A lawyer can make sure your last will and testament complies with the law and discuss your will in-depth. A third option is using an online will writing service, but you may find this less personal than using a lawyer.
Writing Your Last Will and Testament
A last will and testament has several main components. First, list your personal information such as your name, address, date of birth and social security number. Then you should make a declaration, declaring that you are of sound mind and that the following text is your last wishes. Next you need to appoint an Executor, or Personal Representative. This is the person who will carry out your wishes and administer your estate. Make sure that you check the law on who can be an Executor in your state, and appoint someone who is responsible. You should write a section authorizing your Executor to act in your interests.
You can now start to bequeath your assets, explaining how they will be divided between the people or organizations you wish them to go to. You can also write special requests, for example, to explain how you want your funeral to be paid for and carried out. Finally, sign your will and initial each page. Make sure you sign it in accordance with state law, and check whether you need witnesses and notarization.