A will is essential at every stage of your life, providing you with the opportunity to control distribution of your property, establish care for your children and otherwise express your wishes for what will happen upon your death. A will is necessary if you intend to leave property to someone who is not your blood relative, e.g., a domestic partner, a friend or a charity. If you die without a will, the court determines how your property is distributed, who cares for your children and even what happens to your beloved pet — and the decisions the court makes might not reflect your desires. I will draft a valid will that accurately conveys your intentions so your final wishes will be honored.
Wills are not difficult to execute, but simple mistakes can render them invalid in whole or in part. Certain forms of wills are easier to prove than others. Essential elements of a valid will include:
An error in the execution of your will can cause confusion in the court and rancor among your heirs. To make sure that your wishes can be carried out, let me draft a valid will.
As your life unfolds, your circumstances can change and your concerns may shift. To remain current, you should review and update your will every three to five years. I will review your will in light of your current finances, marital status and family situation. I draft valid codicils that address changes in your circumstances and outlook.
Your will allows you to make contingency plans for the care of your minor children. This is especially crucial if you are a single parent, but married couples must also consider the remote possibility of death in a common accident. If you have not named a guardian for your children, the court appoints one, who may make decisions contrary to your wishes. In your will, you can also make arrangements for the care of your pets, naming a guardian to take responsibility for them.
You may recall the tragic case of the young lady who became brain dead, living only through artificial means. Her parents wished that she be allowed to live in this fashion. Her husband wished that she be allowed to die with dignity. A nasty court battle ensued. Do not let this happen to you. I will prepare a one-page document for you to sign to instruct how you are to be treated in case of a similar, tragic circumstance.
Isn’t it time for you execute your will, review and/or revise your existing will or execute a living will? Call me at 337-656-3333 or contact my office online to schedule a consultation at my Lake Charles office.