Four Things You Should Know About Your Will

29 May

 It is naturally very difficult for people to confront the tough questions: What will happen to my family? What will happen to my home and assets? Who will deal with my business? Avoiding the subject however is not wise. Nor is trying to take care of your estate with a do-it-yourself short cut online estate document or using self-help services which are not attorneys. Here are a few  things you should know about wills:

 1) It will NOT keep your estate out of probate. A will at death is required to go through probate court to handle the distribution of your assets, which means attorneys’ fees and court costs. There are much better options available.

 2) It will not protect your health. If you are rendered incapacitated either mentally or physically, a will won’t allow your spouse or loved one to make health care decisions for you. There are specific legal documents which address this.

 3) A will may not be the best way to transfer your business.There are other documents to be considered which may be more effective.

 4) It will not allow your spouse or surviving heirs to handle asset management issues such as opening/closing accounts, selling assets which require a legal power of attorney, etc.

5) It will undoubtedly cost your estate more money in the end because an attorney most likely will need to be hired and involved in the process.  

In short, a well-rounded and managed estate cannot just rely on one document, but requires a set of estate documents each designed to facilitate specific objectives.

 

Stephen J. Gross with offices in West Los Angeles is an attorney focused on estate law, real estate law, business entity formations, asset protection, and commercial litigation. A free 1/2 hour phone consultation is available to PagesLA readers.

We can be reached at 310- 652 8090. Also you can visit sjgassociates.com.

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