Include These Three Items in Your Will

A will or trust explains what you want to have happen to your assets when you die, hopefully in a very, very long time. While most people understand that a will explains what to do with money, property, and children, there are other parts you might be surprised by.

MSN’s recent article entitled “3 surprising things you might not think to include your will” tells about three things to include in your will that you may not have thought about before.

Guardianship and funds for your pet. If you have a pet, you’ll want to make certain that it has care when you’re not around. You can name a guardian to take ownership of your pet, in the event your pet outlives you. You can also set up a pet trust in some states.

Include These Three Items in Your WillAn executor for your digital assets. You probably have accounts with data on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other social media accounts. You may have an account for online gaming, operate an online small business, or own other important digital assets. If so, you should appoint someone to manage your digital afterlife.

A digital executor should be able to access your online accounts and manage closing them down or moving them to a new strategy.

Charitable donations. If you have given to a religious organization, school, or other nonprofit, you can include these charities in your estate plan. Another option is to instruct a family member to make a donation with a part of an inheritance. It’s not legally binding, but could it pass on a tax benefit to the ultimate donor.

In addition, remember to keep your beneficiaries updated on all life insurance policies and retirement acOKcounts, because the listed beneficiary on these accounts supersedes anything you put in your will.

If you get divorced and remarried, update your will and also make certain that your life insurance beneficiary is updated.

Don’t procrastinate. Make sure that all of your estate planning documents are up to date.

If you live in California and have assets valued at $166,250 or more, we recommend that you create a trust in addition to your will.  A trust will not only help you avoid probate but can provide additional tax planning and distribution options that a will cannot provide.

Meet with your estate planning attorney every year or two, to also be sure your plan reflects any changes in the law or changes in your circumstances.

One of the main goals of our law practice is to help families like your plan for safe, problem free, and successful transfer of assets to the next generation.  Call our office today to schedule a time for us to review your estate plan and identify the best strategies for you and your family to ensure your legacy of love and financial security.  Our office is located in Santa Ana, CA but we serve all of California including Irvine, Orange, Tustin, Newport Beach, and Anaheim.

For more information and articles on estate planning, probate, trust law, and business planning, please visit our website and subscribe to our monthly e-newsletter.

Reference: MSN (Jan. 10, 2020) “3 surprising things you might not think to include your will”

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