Making a will is not something we like to think about too much but it is a very important thing to have. And it doesn’t have to be hard to do.
What is a will?
A will is a legal document that tells people how you want your property to be handled after you die. In it you will appoint an Executor who is responsible for collecting your assets together, paying off any debts you might have and then distributing your estate. It is this last bit that you really need to think about as a will is only effective after you die and by then, it’s too late to change it.
Is my will valid?
The laws in each state vary slightly but there are some common themes among all of them. In every state you must:
- Be 18 and be of sound mind and body. This means that you must be able to make decisions and understand what those decisions mean.
- You must also make your will in writing. It is not sufficient to just tell someone, you must document it clearly.
- The document must be signed by two witnesses in order to be valid.
Why do I need a will?
Technically you don’t need a will but if you don’t have one then the government will decide, based on a formula, how your estate is divided up. If you trust them to do what you want then don’t write a will. If you don;t trust them to know precisely how you want things handled after you die then you’d best put some measures in place.
In a will you can decide how to divide your estate between the people you know and love, charities and so forth. You can choose who administers this for you and you can even appoint a guardian for your children. And let’s not forget our pets, you can direct who your other loved ones go to and how they are taken care of as well.
With lockr we allow you to list a beneficiary against each item in your inventory. While this is not a legal document in its own right, you can attach this to a will and use it to formalise how you want your things to be handled. If you change your mind you can go back and adjust who gets what very easily. There’s no easier way to make a will and ensure your things are distributed the way you want them to be.