The idea of creating a will may have seemed a bit premature while you were still finishing your degree at Kentucky State University. But, now that you’ve settled into your career and expecting your first child, the thought is more on target.
You may still think that it’s too early to be planning for your passing, that you haven’t accumulated enough assets to make it worth it, or that you have plenty of time.
Since we don’t know what tomorrow will bring, it is never too soon to create a will. Planning ahead will take some of the burden of decision making from your family. You can also put special provisions in place concerning the future of your child.
Read below to find out some of the important things to consider when drafting your will.
It’s not a DIY project
Since probate laws can be different in every state, a do-it-yourself will that you can download from the internet may not be the best option. Instead, consult with a Kentucky attorney that has experience with the state’s probate laws.
Contracting the services of a professional will also ensure that your will is correctly signed and finalized.
Before you meet with an attorney, make a list of all of your assets. This includes pension plans, IRA accounts, credit cards, bank accounts, digital property, and anything else that is considered a financial asset. A comprehensive list of your assets will help you determine who gets what.
After you’ve created the list, keep a copy in a safe place and be sure that another family member, such as your wife, has access to it. Also, as things change, keep this list updated.
Joint property doesn’t count
Marital property, such as your house, that is owned jointly by you and your wife will not be subject to your will. Your wife will automatically receive full ownership of joint property at the time of your death. This includes joint accounts, real estate, and anything else that is in both of your names.
Accounts that are only in your name will pass through the will.
Choose the right guardians and trustees
You can use your will to provide for the guardianship of your child in the case that both you and wife pass. However, do not list the same person to act as both guardian and trustee. The person that is in charge of your child’s assets should not be the same person acting as the legal guardian.
It is never too early to plan for your future and the future of your child in case the worst should happen.