It doesn't matter how young or old you are. Just think about it. If you travel a lot or just drive to work a short distance, anything can happen. Not saying it will, but it's good to be prepared. When my parents passed, they had a will. They put the house in a trust (more on that another time). They had some annuities to ensure that the other was taken care of if the other passed first.
We learned a LOT from seeing how organized my (Rob) dad was in planning and it made it much easier. The article below was written by trusts-estates.lawyers.com, and provide you with good information.
DON'T PUT IT OFF- Wills can be between $500 and $1000 or more. Of course, you can always go on-line and try and figure it out, but we felt much more comfortable going with our attorney friend Stefanie.
PROVISIONS FOR PETS - In the will, or in another document, you can make provisions for pets that survive you. We are making a stipulation that allows for any funds to take care of the dogs, and who takes them. Of course, we cleared it first with them. It's really important to think about.
BTW- If you missed the previous blog,a durable power of attorney gives you and your partner the authority to manage each other’s finances if one of you becomes incapacitated. A power of attorney for health care, sometimes referred to as a health care proxy, gives you the right to make medical decisions on your partner’s behalf if he or she is unable to do so.
Below is the article about why a Will is important. - Rob and Tom
Why Is a Will Important?
If you own property and assets, you may want to have a will. That way you, rather than your state government, can decide who gets your property and assets when you die. In most cases, wills are written legal documents, but some states do recognize other types of wills. The legal requirements of each state can vary, so it’s essential that your will is drafted and executed properly.
A Will Must Meet All Legal RequirementsMost wills are formal documents that instruct how money and property should be distributed to each person named as an heir. For a will to be valid, you usually need to have one or two people witness you signing the will and then sign it themselves. In some states, however, wills that are handwritten or simply spoken can be legally enforceable, too. Video wills are increasing in popularity but, given that this is a relatively new development, your state’s law may not recognize a video as a legal will.
Your Will Does More than Name HeirsThe main reason for having a will is to allocate your property to heirs in any way you like. But there are other things you can include such as funeral arrangements, legal guardians for your minor children, and who should serve as executor of your will or trustee of any trusts you create.
A Will Prevents Intestate SuccessionWhen you die without a will, state laws known as “intestate succession laws” will decide which family members will inherit your estate and in what proportion. In most states, your spouse and children take priority under intestate succession. If you want other people to inherit some of your property, or if you want to leave everything to your spouse and children, but in different proportions than your state’s law provides for, a will is one of the best ways to ensure that the state won’t make that decision for you.
A Will May Eliminate Family ConflictThe division of an estate after death comes with many emotions. The slightest differences can result in hurt feeling and recriminations. As divorce becomes more complex and blended families more common, dividing assets has become even more complicated. A typical situation is when you’re in a second marriage and have children from your first marriage. In this case, allocating your property purposefully between your second spouse and your children can give you peace of mind and prevent your family from fighting over your possessions.
A Trusts and Estates Lawyer Can HelpThe law surrounding creation of a will is complicated. Plus, the facts of each case are unique. This article provides a brief, general introduction to the topic. For more detailed, specific information, please contact a trusts and estates lawyer.