What is a Will?
A Will is a document that states what you want to happen to your money and property after you pass away. It is an essential part of your estate plan. Basically, a Will answers 2 questions: 1) who gets your assets; and 2) who is in charge. There is usually more that goes into a Will than that, but I think that is a good starting point for most people.
Almost everyone needs a Will, especially if you are married with kids. Don’t assume that all of your assets will go to your spouse, because they might not. In Kentucky, if you die without a Will, your assets will pass according to the Kentucky state laws. These laws state that your spouse will only receive half! Most of my clients don’t want this to happen. Don’t let the state decide what happens to your assets. Let me help you write a Will that states YOUR intentions.
Is a Will enough?
Sometimes a Will is enough and if so, I won’t try to convince you that you need to have more costly documents prepared. I can help you decide which documents are right for you and your family. Some estate plans are simple and inexpensive. If you only need a simple Will, I am happy to do that for you. However, some situations require more planning and more detailed documents. I can help with those too.
A Will meets the minimum requirement of having an estate plan in place. It is a good starting point, but there are other documents that are better. I’m talking about Trusts. A Trust allows for much more detailed planning than a Will. A Trust is also a great tool to avoid Probate Court and even protect your assets from a nursing home. Just because a Will might be enough doesn’t mean that it’s the best plan for you and your family. However, it is certainly better than having nothing at all.
What is the process to make a Will?
After everything that happened in 2020, you still don’t have your Will done? Let’s change that today! At Bauman Estate Planning, we make this process very simple. By the way, the first meeting is free, so what have you got to lose?
Prepare for the First Meeting – Think about what assets you own. You should know where your accounts are located and what type of accounts you have. It’s also important to know who your beneficiaries are on your insurance policies and retirement accounts. Think about who you want to receive your assets after you pass away. Also, consider how you want them to receive their inheritance; all at one time or over an extended period of time. Lastly, think about who you want to be in charge of carrying out your wishes. This person is called the Executor.
First Meeting – I am glad to meet you at either my Dixie Highway or Breckenridge Lane office. We can also discuss your situation by phone if you prefer. We will discuss your different assets, your family situation, the beneficiaries in your Will, and the Executor. We may discuss other estate planning documents at this time. Depending on your situation, we might talk about Trusts, Powers of Attorney, and Living Wills. I will also give you an estimate on the cost.
Prepare & Review Documents – Once you decide which documents you want, I will prepare them for you. I usually email a draft to my clients so they can glance over it and think of any questions or changes they have. Then, we will review the Will together to make sure it’s perfect before we sign it.
Sign Documents – This is usually done at one of my 2 office locations, but we can do it by Zoom if you prefer. You will keep the original and I will keep a copy. I can also make extra copies for you if you plan to give copies to someone.
As you can see, the process is fairly quick and painless. There is no reason to continue putting this off. None of us knows what the future holds. I’m happy to help you set up the perfect plan for you and your family!
Here are some links to other Kentucky estate planning documents I can help you with:
Call Bauman Estate Planning today at (502) 267-7967 or click on the link at the top of the page to schedule a phone call or in-person meeting with Jason.