A will is a legal document that describes the maker's wishes for how to distribute any assets after death. A will can also include other instructions that may guide one's family in making critical decisions for the departed. Without wills, many families find themselves in conflict with one another as they struggle to determine the best way to handle the estate.
What happens to a person's assets after his or her death? For some people in Florida, the answer to this question is not important. However, individuals who do not take the time to create wills can ultimately put their families in difficult situations.
Is a handwritten will good enough? That is the question that the family of the late singer Aretha Franklin has to answer. The family recently discovered not one but three handwritten wills believed to have been written by Franklin. While some people in Florida might think this could be helpful, it could end up complicating things even further.
The complexity of making an estate plan may cause most people to put it off until it is too late. Others may try to find the quickest and cheapest way to designate where their belongings will go after they die. This may mean jotting a will on a piece of paper or downloading a document from a do-it-yourself website. However, it is important to understand Florida law when it comes to wills and other elements of estate planning.
Life is unpredictable, and significant changes can bring about the need for a Florida reader to change his or her estate plan. When major life changes occur, it is almost always necessary to change wills and other estate planning documents to match current circumstances. Failure to adjust plans as needed can result in complications in the future.
Many people across the country find a home in Florida in their later years. The warm climate and friendly tax laws make this state a haven for retirees. However, moving from another state may mean adapting to many changes, including any estate planning decisions someone may have made prior to relocating. Each state has different rules for what makes wills and trusts valid, and those who move to a new state should be sure to learn if those laws require adjustments to their estate plans.
Dealing with matters of estate planning is not a pleasant thing to do, but it can be even more unpleasant for those loved ones left behind to sort out the details of an unprepared estate. Unfortunately, most people in Florida and across the country do not even have simple wills to express their wishes and to name someone to handle the process of closing the estate. A will is an excellent way to organize one's affairs so that loved ones are not left with an additional burden.
The rich and famous may accumulate their fortunes using their looks, talent or position in society. However, when it comes to end-of-life decisions, some celebrities seem to be just like many normal folk who put off making plans. Once again, fans and estate-planning advisors were left scratching their heads as music icon Aretha Franklin passed away with no will or trust. While most in Florida may want to know what will happen to her possessions, advisors want her fans to know that while wills are crucial, an estate plan can do more than distribute assets.
Despite the fact that most people understand the importance of making an estate plan, it is common for Florida residents to procrastinate making that plan until it is too late. Those who die without writing their wills leave it to the court to decide what happens to their estates. The courts refer to an estate without a will as intestate, and there is a statutory pattern of succession that probate will follow when someone dies intestate.