According to a recent report from Morgan Stanley, only 39% of individuals earning between $40,000 and $ 80,000 per year have a will. This means that 61% of those in that group do NOT have a will.
If you do not have a will, the state government decides who will get your assets–such as your car, your home, funds in your bank accounts, and your personal tangible items–when you die. This is called the “intestacy” law, and it does not care whether you would prefer your hard earned asset to go to someone else. If you like to make your own decisions, and you want to decide who will receive your assets and who will care for your minor children upon your death, then you need to have a will prepared as soon as possible!
A will allows you to decide while you are alive things like: Who will be the guardian for my children? Who do I trust to be my personal representative (formerly called an “executor”), who will follow my instructions in my will to make sure that the people who you want to receive each asset will in fact receive it? Who will receive my assets upon my death? There are other things we can draft into your will. By having a will, you get to make these decisions, not the state government.
A will is but one of three legal documents that are absolutely necessary. Believe it or not, the other two are documents that are important to have while you are alive. They are (1) a durable power of attorney and (2) a health care directive or proxy. The durable power of attorney lets you designate an “agent” who can sign documents for you when you are not able to do so. Similarly, the health care directive or proxy allows you to choose up to three agents who can make health care decisions for you when you cannot. We include these two documents with every estate plan at no extra charge.
At Libby O’Brien Kingsley & Champion, we do all of our estate planning work on a flat fee basis so you will know up front, the cost for your peace of mind placing you in control, not the government. Brian L. Champion, Esq., concentrates his entire practice in estate planning and estate administration in our offices located in: Kennebunk, Maine, Burlington, Massachusetts, and Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
If you want to take control of your major life and family issues, now is the time for you to do so. Call Libby O’Brien Kingsley & Champion today.