Nobody likes to talk about the worst possible scenario. This ‘worst case scenario’ being death. However, it’s part of the reality we all must face. It’s a difficult topic to breach, but it’s an important one that requires discussion. Especially if you have a family to look after, it becomes a legal matter that’s best covered before things get out of hand.
This is what makes leaving a will crucial, if not paramount to protecting your family and legacy.
Normally, people don’t bother with a will as they’re under the impression that they’re healthy and nothing bad will happen to them. But it is very much important and there are many reasons why you should have a will- and most of them (if not all) are all valid concerns. In the event that you pass away without a will, you’re leaving important aspects of what you worked hard for in life to the state. You won’t be able to change or have a say in what happens to your property or how your assets will be distributed. This makes it more difficult for your family and loved ones to move on.
But there’s more to it than a simple matter of property and ownership. Below are some reasons why you should consider making a will.
For Your Minor Child or Children
If your child is still a minor and you are not able to state in your will who gets custody over them, the immediate family member, like the surviving parent, will be the default. Sometimes, what the court decides isn’t what you want for your child, and it’s this exact instance that you want to avoid. Being able to explicitly state in your will who you want to take care of your child will give you peace of mind, knowing that your child will be in the good hands of those you choose.
Have Control Over Who Gets What
As mentioned, a large part of the will includes how your property is shared. It will allow you to decide who your beneficiaries will be, and lets you make your estate plan. It’s also relatively common to include who does not get anything, especially if there are some family members who’ve been disinherited. It can also include guarantees, like a child receiving support for their schooling.
Distribution of property may sound like a rather materialistic approach to a will, but it’s one of its most important aspects. The last thing you want is your family breaking apart due to unclear inheritances.
Your Pets are Important Too
For people who have pets, their furry friends are family too. If you’ve watched the cartoon movie Aristocats, leaving your properties to your pets might be what you have in mind. You will need to consult with a lawyer though and decide on a beneficiary who will take care of your pets, like a trusted friend or family member. This way, you can also allot funds to specifically cater to your pets’ care.
Digital Assets Can Also Be Covered
Because of how technology has permeated our lives now, there is no doubt that you would have at least one or two digital assets that you’d want to be taken care of after you pass. These digital assets not only account for social media and digital files like photos and videos, but if you have a digital wallet or account, it’s important that you decide what will happen to them. This means getting a digital executor to be able to manage your digital assets.
It Helps Avoid Family Dispute
This is especially important if you have a large family, complicated relationships with family members, or just want to ensure that each member of your family will have what is due to them. It helps your family members to know what your last will and testament is, so they won’t be left to guess after you’ve passed. If you leave no will, there may be a tendency for your family to have disagreements over what they think you would have wanted to happen. This causes arguments that can last quite a while, and it’s going to be more than a thoughtful gesture on your part if you accomplish a will.
Leaving Your Own Legacy
A will isn’t just a matter of handing out the things you owned in life. It’s largely about taking care of those you leave behind so that you rest easy knowing that they’ll be covered and safe. Leaving a will isn’t always the easiest of topics to discuss, but it’s a very important one nonetheless.
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