Estate Planning: Wills

A will is a written document that takes effect when you die.  A will allows you to identify the person(s), an executor, who will distribute the property you own in your own name when you die to the people you want to have your property, or your beneficiaries. A will is the document where individuals name for children under 18 years old.  A will can excuse your executor from paying a bond if probate is necessary.  A will can be as simple or as complex to satisfy a client’s needs.

A will is a great estate planning tool; however, the document has some limitations. For instance, a will does not control property that is owned with someone else, i.e. joint tenancy.  Because a will takes effect when you die, a will does not help you when you are living and experience a period of short or long-term incapacity or disability. A will does not guarantee your estate will avoid probate either.