August is “National Make a Will” month. As the month comes to a close and seasons start to change it is a perfect time to think about writing a Will. Many put off writing a Will because not many people want to think about death. Being prepared and writing a Will is about life and making sure that all that you have worked for ‘will’, (no pun intended) be taken care of after you pass.
Death is a part of life. Nobody knows the day or time that they will die. Most of us who are healthy and in the midst of the busyness of life could not fathom the idea that we would die before reaching a ripe old age. Then there are those of us who understand that death can come at any time and be totally unexpected.
It is always a good time to make your Will. You can always go back and amend the will if needed. If life situations change go ahead and make the change necessary. The biggest risk in not writing a Will is that you leave behind confusion and controversy rather than the legacy that you want to. Not deciding can become the most costly decision in the end.
Tips for Writing a Will
Here are just a few quick steps to get started and make those very important decisions.
- The first thing you need to do is to list all your assets. All the things that are important to you that you want to leave to someone. They do not have to be things of great monetary value to be listed.
Below are a few examples.
- Collectable keepsakes
- The next step is to name guardians, beneficiaries and the executor
- Guardians who will “adopt” or take on the responsibility of taking care of your children if you have any.
- Beneficiaries are the people who will “get your stuff”
- The executor is one of the more important people that you will name because they will essentially handle your “estate” whether you have many assets are few.
- Decide if you want to preplan and/or prepay for your funeral
Work With a Good Lawyer
Once these decisions are made the hardest part is finished. Next you will have to get it all down on paper. Find a local lawyer who you trust to help you put everything in place. Ask your friends for a referral or read online reviews. If you’d prefer, there are DIY will kits that you can find online by a simple internet search. Finally, we would still recommend you find a lawyer to make sure all the legal requirements are met for your Will.
Remember writing a Will is not about death but about life that you led.