Some people do not need for a will. However, why you may choose to have a will.

With a will can you name the Executor / Personal Representative (“PR”) you would prefer to handle your estate after your gone.  The PR gathers and protects all your assets, pays all your debts, and distributes your property in accordance with your wishes as set forth in the will.

If you have no will, someone has to file with the Probate Court to get the legal authority to deal with your property and do the same tasks as the PR. However, a Probate Court Judge decides who the PR is. Consequently, a family battle could ensue. Therefore, a will solves this problem.

If you have a will, you determine how to distribute your property. If you have no will, then the state has a statutory will, and your property may be distributed to people that you don’t want to give to.

A good reason to have a will would be any of these reasons:

You don’t want to leave everything to your spouse.
You want to leave more to one child than another.
You have child(ren) under 18 and want to hold back their access to your money until they are at least age 25 or 30.
You’d like to leave a charity donation.
You want to “cut out” one of your children.
You’d like to leave money to a family member in a way that is protected against lawsuits, creditors, and divorcing spouses.
You’d like to leave an inheritance to your grandchildren or another relative, sibling etc.
Your parents are living, you have no spouse or children, and you want your assets to go to your siblings and not your parents.

So who does not need a will?

You can avoid probate by using “P.O.D.,” “T.O.D.,” joint ownership with right of survivorship, a trust, or beneficiary designations on all your assets.
You’re okay with all your assets distributed immediately to your heirs, regardless of their age or ability to handle money.

However, consider the real cost of not having a will, if your wishes were not carried out because you did not have one. Sometimes even the simplest will is better than no will at all! Remember, Lawyers can make a ton of money in estate litigation.

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