A will is a legal document that provides instructions on how your belongings and property should be distributed when you die. It’s an essential part of your estate plan.
You likely want to be secure when planning for the future in knowing that your assets will go to who you would like them to once you pass away. Without a will, your local probate court will be the entity that decides how to distribute your assets.
Traditionally, wills are drafted by lawyers. In fact, there’s a legal professional known as an estate planning lawyer who specializes in such matters. It can cost anywhere from a hundred dollars to thousands of dollars depending on how complex your current situation is. This is the reason why many people are turning to online will writing services, which are more affordable options for most people.
In most cases, wills don’t consist of too much information. If you don’t know where to get started or how to fill out your will online, don’t hesitate to visit services like Willed to get more information, and be sure to keep the following tips in mind when you do:
1. Choose Your Beneficiaries
After you pass away, somebody’s going to get your money, your belongings, and your house. You probably won’t need to think long about the beneficiaries you want to designate—if you have children, it will most likely be your children, but you can also leave assets to your grandchildren, nieces, nephews, close friends, charitable organizations, or pretty much anyone that you would like. However, it’s the key to ensure that who you choose is up-to-date. When you fill out your will online, there’s an area to identify your beneficiaries.
2. Pick Your Will’s Executor
The executor is the person who reads your will and sees that all your wishes are carried out. They handle the special gifting and use the estate’s funds to take care of paying any debts you’ve left.
Your executor must be ethical, responsible, and a level-headed person that you trust and who won’t be intimidated by your strong-willed loved ones. You might want to pick your eldest child, a lawyer you depend on, or a family friend. Usually, you can get help from lawyers who are paid to do this out of the estate’s funds—every state has particular laws on how to handle their fees.
3. Be Specific with Who Gets What
Once you start filling out your will online, don’t be vague and hope that everybody would just know what you like. This can be tricky when you’ve had many children or when you have your stepchildren in the mix. As such, you have to be specific with everything. In this way, it’ll help avoid any possible disputes in the future.
4. Choose Your Minor Children’s Legal Guardian
Typically, when a parent dies, the other parent will get the minor children’s custody. In some circumstances, it might not be the case, especially when both parents died at the same time.
With that in mind, if you have minor children, you will want them to be taken care of by the best possible legal guardians they deserve. Your legal guardian can be someone you trust and will secure your children’s future without taking advantage of the wealth you left behind.
5. Include What Will Happen to Your Pets
For most people, pets are considered as members of the family. However, under the law, pets are personal property. When you write your will, include a provision detailing who must take care of your pets and other special care instructions. But, before you put any name, discuss it with the person first to ensure that they are willing to take in your pet.
6. Bottom Line
Filling out your will online is easy. All you need to do is to follow those tips above and make sure to know what reflects your current wishes. For that reason, it’s imperative to update your will periodically and consider births, deaths, marriages, divorces, and other life events. Checking your will’s terms every year is a wise decision.