What is a will?
A will is a statement from you about how your property should be distributed upon your death. In order for a will to be valid, formalities must be followed in its creation and signing.
Absent any instruction from you, the state in which you reside will determine how to distribute property according to the laws of that state. In Texas, the rules follow a complex system designed to fit what most people would generally want (first to spouse, if no spouse, then to children if no children, then to parents, and so on and so forth).
This system is greatly complicated by the fact that many people don’t fit into the complex and strict structure offered by the rules:
- What if you’ve been divorced?
- What if you don’t get along with your parents?
- What if your children need special care?
- What if you think your brother who is less wealthy and clean cut than your sister would make a better guardian for your kids?
- What if you haven’t found the courage to tell your family what you really want to do with your property should the unthinkable happen?
- What if you have good reasons to disinherit a certain family member?
Further complications arise from the world that we live in.
One example lies in the problem of administering an estate. Because there is no clear instruction from a deceased person who didn’t leave a will, a court will be forced to exercise more oversight over an estate to make sure that no one can contest the proceedings at a later date. Title insurance companies have strict requirements even above and beyond what local probate judges require before real property (your home) can be sold.
A legion of problems is resolved by simply leaving a properly drafted and executed will.
The truth of the matter is that rarely do the laws set up by the government for the general public line up with your actual desires in your specific life. The best solution is to have an active estate plan that you regularly update as your life and issues change.
This is best done through counseling with a qualified attorney who can show you the way the state’s rules would apply to your situation, determine your actual desires, bring up issues you hadn’t thought of, and then craft a plan that fulfills your needs while still maintaining the integrity of your wishes.
The legacy you leave behind is how you’ll be remembered in the world. Begin today by discussing with an attorney your needs and wishes! If you are in the McKinney, Texas area, we would be happy to walk you through a plan that works for you.
Still asking yourself, What is a will? Call The Malolo Law Firm, PLLC,
in McKinney at (214) 620-2088. Protect your legacy for your loved ones and plan your way!
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- On June 20, 2016