In a recent post, I talked about what happens if you die without a will, pointing out that contrary to what many people think, the state does not get your property.
Advantages of a Will
Even though your family will still inherit from you without a will, there are definite advantages to having a will.
First, you may want your property divided among your family or friends differently than provided by law. Without a will, the state decides which of your family inherits from you; with a will, you decide.
Second, without a will, all of your property is treated the same. Certain items will not necessarily go to specific individuals. Instead, your property will go to one person or group of persons, such as a spouse, siblings, or parents, without differentiation. By preparing a will, you can specify which of your property goes to which family, friends, or other beneficiaries.
Third, in a will you can also choose the person who will be responsible for handling your estate upon your death, known as a personal representative or executor.
Lastly, if you have minor children, you can designate in your will who will take care of them until they are adults.
Wills Are Not Costly
Most simple wills are inexpensive. For the added peace of mind a will can bring you and your family, it is worth having.
Douglas Kiger, Attorney at Law
Blado Kiger Bolan, Tacoma, Wash.