How to Effectively Prepare a Will for Your Family’s Future

Posted on: 5 October 2023

Nobody wants to think about a time when they won’t be around to be with their loved ones. Nevertheless, creating a will is an essential part of securing your family’s future. Proper estate planning can bring you tranquillity and guarantee that your estate is administered according to your wishes. But where do you start? This blog post will run through some tips on how to effectively prepare a will that will benefit your family.

Determine Who Your Beneficiaries Are

The first step in drawing up your will is figuring out who you want to receive your assets. Begin by writing down a list of your beneficiaries. This could include your family members, charities or friends. Decide what percentage of your estate will go to each person and ensure that you’ve included any other wishes you have, such as who you would want to be the executor of your estate.

Understand Property Ownership

Before you begin designating who will receive which assets, you need to understand how each property or asset is owned. In order to pass property on to certain individuals, you need to ensure that you’re authorised to do so. The way you own assets could impact the method you choose for distributing them.

Choose the Right Method for Distributing Property

While there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to distributing property, there are some widely recognised methods you could explore. These include per capita, per stirpes and personal property memorandum. Writing out your wishes for the distribution of your property can help ensure a smooth process and bring about your final wishes without any uncertainty or legal issues.

Identify your Executor and Powers of Attorney

It is advisable to appoint an executor who will manage your estate’s distribution and bring closure to it after your passing. Nonetheless, their role is demanding and could vary by state, so you should ensure that they’re up to the task. Additionally, designating an attorney-in-fact for healthcare decisions and another for financial decisions and keeping a record of their information in your estate plan will ensure that in the event you are incapacitated, your wishes are carried out without any future confusion.

Review and Update Your Will Periodically

Your circumstances are not static, so your will should not be either. You should periodically review your plan and adjust it when your circumstances or wishes change. Ensure that any adjustments are formalised to avoid future contests. A will review/adjustment is most necessary if one has gone through a divorce, remarriage, if there’s a new addition to the family or if the laws have changed.

Writing a will is not an exercise that should be taken lightly. The decisions you make now could have a significant impact on your loved ones’ future. When it’s time to create a will, remember these tips to help you through the process. For more information about wills, reach out to a local law firm.