Preparing a will is wise for anyone, not just married couples. It is not just for yourself, but for your loved ones. At best, a will spares them from trying to decide what you would have wanted. At worst, the agony of a legal battle over how to distribute your estate.
While most parents opt to leave their estate split equally between their children, others disinherit one or more children for several reasons. They may be concerned about a special needs child receiving government benefits, feel one child is more financially independent than another or not want to leave money to a drug-addicted or troubled child who will spend it irresponsibly. Parents also disinherit because a child is estranged, and some even use it as a way to get the last word and get even after an argument. Parents need reminders that disinheritance is permanent and can cause terrible feelings that last between living children even after you are gone, so there are a few things you should consider before you make this decision.
Preparing for the death of a loved one is difficult emotionally and mentally, and there are actual physical and financial challenges that may make it even harder. If a loved one dies without a will or estate plan, it can be extremely difficult to get financial affairs in order, and this often causes fights and backlash between family members. If a home is not included in a will, it may fall to the next of kin to go through possessions and get the house ready to sell, which can be a huge job. Then it must be determined who pays the taxes and realtor fees, and who inherits the money made from the house. This can be a difficult time for everyone, and it is almost always made easier when the parent is financially and legally prepared to transfer ownership to children or next of kin.
One of the most important aspects of a last will and testament is that it clarifies who you want to manage your property and affairs once you are no longer able to do so yourself. There are multiple positions to be filled if you want your property managed well and you want them filled by people you know and trust. Who you choose depends greatly on the task they will need to complete, so before picking people, it is advantageous to thoroughly understand the services that will need to be performed.