Do I really need
a Last Will And Testament?
should I keep my Last Will And Testament?
happens if I die without a Will?
|Probably, if you own property. While it is
true that state laws will say who receives certain
property regardless of what your Will says, there is still
property that passes according to your Will or according
to the state intestate (dying without a Will) laws.
Therefore, it is a good idea to have a Will.
YES, if you have minor children. The only way you can
say who will raise your child(ren) and who will take care
of their property if you die, is to have a Will. Are there
family members that you want to raise your child? Are
there family members that you do not want to raise your
child? You need to make your Will for your children's
|Many professional advisors recommend making
an entirely new Will whenever you wish to make a change to
your existing Will. Making changes through a codicil can
get burdensome because you must keep the original Will and
all the codicils to it. Thatís because a codicil is
simply an amendment to your existing Will. If you make an
entirely new Will, then the old Will is revoked and only
the new Will remains in effect. It's much easier to keep
track of one document that a number of them.
Keep your Will in a place where it can be found if
necessary. A good place is to keep it with your other
legal papers. You may keep it in a safe deposit box, but
it is not required.
|If you die without a Last Will and
Testament, you are said to have died "intestate."
In that case, the laws of the state in which you are
domiciled at the time of your death will control the
settlement of your estate and the distribution of your
The laws governing intestate estates are designed with
one central purpose. That central purpose is to pay your
outstanding debts at the time of your death, then to pay
the costs of administering and settling your estate, then
to distribute your remaining probate property to your next
of kin. If you donít leave a Will to let people know how
you want your property distributed, the state has to do
the next best thing and try to guess at what you might
want done, based upon what others in your position have
What do I need
to know to make my Last Will And Testament?
Can I change my
Last Will And Testament?
there certain times when I need to make a new Last Will
You need to know who you want to (1)
receive your property when you die, (2) handle your
estate, (3) have custody of any minor children you have,
and (4) take care of any property that is left to your
You can make a new Last Will And Testament
as often as you want. Do not make written changes in your
Will after you sign it. Strikeouts and written additions
will void your Will. For example, if you want to name a
different person to be your Executor, make a new Will.
Yes! If you change your mind on anything in your Will,
get married or divorced, or if something happens to one of
the beneficiaries name in your Will. How
to do a will
Are Last Will
And Testaments recorded at the Courthouse?
move to another state, do I need to make a new Last Will
Can my spouse
and I make a "joint" Last Will And Testament?
|Some states allow you to
file your Will at the Courthouse. I do not recommend this
because it could hinder your changing your Will in the
future. If you feel safer by filing your Will, call the
Clerk of Court or a lawyer licensed in your state to find
out the procedures.
states must give credit to Wills legally created in other
states. However, since state laws vary as to what is and
is not covered by a Will, you may want to talk with a
lawyer licensed in your new state to make sure that your
property will still be distributed as you want it to be.
||Yes, but I do not think
that it is a good idea. When a Will is probated, it is a
permanent public record. Since your Will is the
"joint" Will on public record, you may have a
difficult time changing or even voiding your Will.