While not a particularly pleasant or easy thing to think about, preparing for the end of your life isn’t just important for you – it’s important for your loved ones, too! Learn why it’s important to create a will and make end-of-life plans.
Why You Need a Will
Wills are important because they state your wishes, specifically when it comes to the allocation of property when you pass. If you were to pass away before creating a will, who gets your property is decided by the state where you live. In Florida, your property would be probated, which is a legal process overseen by the courts. Wills afford your family the ability to not have to worry about court dates or bureaucracy when it comes to your assets, allowing them to do the most important thing during that time: grieve and make preparations.
Wills are instrumental in keeping family disputes about property to a minimum. You can also name someone as the executor of your will. This person should be someone you trust to ensure that your assets are managed well until it’s distributed to your inheritors.
Of course, a will has to be properly made. You can’t just write on a piece of paper and have it be legally binding!
Creating a Will
If you’re worried about getting your will done properly, getting professional help is encouraged. The more assets (like investments and property) and beneficiaries you have, the more work has to be done. Lawyers and accountants can help you in this process. A professional can help you avoid pitfalls as well as make you aware of any problems your estate could face. Professionals must be compensated, so be sure you have the necessary funds to pay for their work!
Online Legal Services
You can also create a will through an online legal service. A good example is Legal Zoom, which offers a few different will creation services. While a good option, these aren’t a one-size-fits-all solution, and estates that are more complicated may still be better suited to the touch of an in-person professional.
If your estate is simple, and cost is an issue, creating your own will is a viable alternative! You can start by finding a will template online, at office supplies stores or at the library. Preparation is key when making your own will. It goes without saying that you should only do this if you have your affairs in order, as a professional won’t be there to guide you.
Once your will is complete, you will need to execute it according to state law. This is typically done by signing the will before a witness and having the document notarized. A will that doesn’t complete this final step will not hold up to scrutiny.
If you’re looking for notarization services, Florida Credit Union offers notary services in all of our branches! Be sure to call your local branch for more information.
Our Challenge to You
Get started on your will! Whether it’s just researching professionals around your area that couple help you or making a detailed list of your assets and beneficiaries, the best time to get started with a will is yesterday. The second best is today!
Florida Credit Union is a full-service financial institution. Founded in 1954 as the Alachua County Teachers’ Credit Union, FCU now services over 130,000 members in 48 counties throughout North and Central Florida. For more information on the services we provide, visit FLCU.org or call us at 1-800-284-1144.