VanNess & VanNess, P.A.

Advantages to creating a will

According to a 2011 poll, around 60 percent of U.S. residents have not made a will. Some Florida residents might not have one because they think estate planning is only for older people. However, there are a number of reasons people of all ages should consider creating one. For example, parents with minor children can use a will to appoint a guardian for them.

An unexpected death may occur at any age, and in 2011, over 90,000 Americans who were between the ages of 20 to 39 died. If a person dies without a will, state intestacy law will determine who receives the decedent's assets. Not having an estate plan could also result in a more expensive and longer-lasting probate process. A person can also use a will to leave assets to charitable organizations.

A testator appoints an executor to handle the distribution of assets and other estate matters, and this will also be court-appointed if one is not named. This means someone could be named by the court who will not deal well with family dynamics. Overall, a will is likely to simplify things for the family in a number of ways.

An attorney may be able to assist in creating a will and any other necessary estate planning documents such as a power of attorney that appoints someone to handle people's finances if they become too incapacitated to do so. Accompanying this may be documentation about end-of-life care and who should make medical decisions. People may also want to consider trusts. Trusts can perform many functions ranging from tying distribution of assets to certain milestones, such as marriage or education, to protecting family members who are incapacitated.

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