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The 5 main reasons you need a will

Wills aren't just for millionaires and those with huge estates to distribute. It's wise for anyone to have a will, regardless of assets.

Wondering if you really need one? Below are five key reasons. With a will:

  1. You make plans for the kids. Even if you don't have assets, if you have a family, you want to pick someone to care for your children after you're gone. Making a simple will gives you one more way to provide for your children and work for their best interests.
  2. You guarantee that your distribution wishes are followed. Some people just assume that their heirs will make all the "right" decisions, but why take that risk?
  3. You pick someone to handle your estate. There are a lot of loose ends to tie up, from dealing with the home to credit card bills to distributing the proceeds of a life insurance policy. You want to pick the right person for the job.
  4. You can cut people out. Perhaps you had a falling out with someone who would otherwise have inherited portions of your estate. A will is a tool to officially disinherit that person and keep your assets from him or her.
  5. You plan for an unpredictable future. Many people don't make a will because they say they'll just do it later. They hope to live to 80 or 90, so why have a will at 35? Unfortunately, living to 80 isn't a guarantee. Even those in perfect health could be victims in a car accident or something of this nature.

A will allows you to plan now for that future that you can't predict. If you want to draft one, make sure you know exactly what legal steps you need to take.

Source: FindLaw, "Top Ten Reasons to Have a Will," accessed Jan. 19, 2018

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