Planning is an essential part of the lives of most people in Florida. Even those who are impulsive and choose to do things on the spur of the moment may want to plan for the distribution of their assets upon their demise. Because death is a depressing thought, it is not uncommon for individuals to procrastinate with drafting a lawful will
However, without a will, a person will die intestate, which means that state law will determine how his or her assets will be divided. Including a will in an estate plan will allow the individual the confidence that accumulated assets will be passed to selected recipients. It is also vital to revisit a will from time to time as personal circumstances and the level of wealth may have changed since drafting the original. Along with a will, certain other elements must be included in an estate plan.
An executor must be appointed to administrate the manner in which the estate is handled, and it may be wise to get that person’s consent. Some suggest that a second person must be appointed to take over if the appointed person is unable to carry out these duties. Named beneficiaries must be reviewed and updated occasionally. While certain assets, such as insurance policies, brokerage accounts and retirement accounts, can be passed to beneficiaries, any property that is held jointly will go to the surviving owner.
Utilizing the skills of an experienced Florida estate planning attorney to provide guidance with drawing up a will can prove to be advantageous. Not only will such a professional ensure that all documents comply with state laws and that nothing is left unaddressed, he or she can also provide valuable input. For example, intelligent planning with beneficiaries and retirement accounts can create a tax-deferred building of wealth for decades before the person’s passing.