It’s a sad fact that families with the very best of intentions sometimes, for a variety of reasons, neglect the crucial task of keeping their wills up to date — or worse, they don’t have a will at all.
Let’s face it, it’s an area that most of us don’t like to deal with. Confronting your own mortality is never pleasant, and if there are sensitivities within the family, it’s often easier to just put it off for another week, month, year or years.
Of course, doing this only adds to the considerable burdens, both emotional and practical, survivors face when a family is hit by an unexpected death.
A properly drawn will is vital to ensure that your property will be distributed among your survivors as you would want it to be. In your will, you choose an executor for your estate, and also nominate a guardian to care for your minor children if you have any.
Not only is having a will crucial, it’s important to keep it current. For example, when your children are young, you may wish for another adult member of your family to serve as executor. But as your children themselves become adults, it may be more desirable to have one of them fulfill this role.
In addition, probate laws change over time, and you may want to alter certain provisions of your will to reflect those changes, as well as changes within your own family that may cause you to feel differently than you did when the will was first drafted. Probate law is complex, and there are steps you can take to protect your assets, and ensure your heirs are provided for in as timely and generous a fashion as possible. The law firm of Green Haines Sgambati has several experienced probate attorneys on staff. One of them would be glad to meet with you to discuss your particular situation and help develop a sensible estate plan.