Tips on Creating Living Wills in Bel Air, MD

For most people, creating living wills in Bel Air, MD, isn’t difficult; the hard thing is finding the time to sit down and get it done. In this article, readers will get several tips on planning and create a will that suits their assets and their wishes.

Think Small

Wills aren’t required for bigger assets, as things like bank accounts and residences are automatically passed to a joint owner upon one’s death. Life insurance policies and retirement accounts already have named beneficiaries; these names should be kept current to reflect one’s family status and wishes. However, if one has solely-owned accounts or property, they go through the will unless the owner specifies otherwise by creating a trust. The other big reason to have a will is to ensure that sentimental items go to the right person. By creating a living will, clients can simplify things for a family, while reducing fights over possessions.

Select a Guardian for Minors

If one has children under the age of 18, a living will is key because it names their guardian. If one dies without a will naming a guardian, the court gets involved and they will typically choose the first person who steps forward. In cases in which an ex-spouse is unfit, one can write a letter detailing one’s wishes and include it in the living will. It isn’t legally binding, but it can keep the court apprised of potential issues.

Choose an Executor

An executor is one who carries out the provisions of living wills in Bel Air, MD. They wrap up one’s final affairs, such as paying debts and taxes, closing bank accounts and distributing property according to the will. Most people choose relatives, but one may be better served by choosing Michael S. Birch, attorney at law. It’s not necessary, but it is common for an executor (if a family member was chosen) to visit this website and consult an attorney due to the complexities of handling a will.

Keep the Document Updated

Living wills are fluid documents and should be updated if a named beneficiary dies, if there’s a divorce or remarriage, or if guardians are no longer needed. One should also make changes if they move to a jurisdiction with community property laws. Rather than making substantial changes to a living will, it’s usually simpler to create an entirely new document. Browse the website for more details.


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