At What Age Should You Make a Will?
You’re almost never too young to make a will; once you reach maturity and acquire any assets to bequeath loved ones when the time comes, it’s appropriate to make a will. Here are some things to keep in mind as you contemplate preparing your Last Will and Testament.
Many young people begin working right after high school or college. Some invest their earnings in a stock portfolio or launch a small business. Others start a savings account at the bank or credit union while starting a collection of motorcycles, classic toys, or designer items. When you begin to accumulate possessions of value, that is the time to make a will to let loved ones know what to do with your belongings. A few clothing items and some books or a large-screen TV are not hard to dispose of, but more substantial personal effects may require your directives spelled out in a final will.
When you buy a home to live in or as a rental for others, you will need to make provision for what to do with that property when you pass on. If you have a spouse or live-in partner, that person might be automatically entitled to your real estate property. But your wishes still need to be confirmed in a will to avoid confusion or contention when the time comes. Your wishes for the disposition of a vacation home, a timeshare, or a shared property with siblings should be explained in your will.
Marriage and Children
After marriage and children become part of your life, a will is especially important to provide for their needs. Assets like a life insurance policy, property, possessions, and heirlooms will need to be distributed according to your preferences. You may also need to indicate your plans for the kids’ education as well as special items like a gun collection or book and video royalties. In addition, you should give some thought and explain in your will how to handle inheritances if one of your children predecease you. For example, would that child’s share be added to the shares of the remaining children, or would it be given instead to the deceased child’s offspring, if any?
Estate Planning Help
It might be in your best interests to consult a will attorney with your questions and concerns. The attorney can help you plan your estate for distribution and even prepare the documents for you. They can be updated if changes are needed in the future due to shifting circumstances.
Start planning your will now. Contact a will attorney for help to ensure everything is done clearly and correctly.