Many people want to take the most basic approach possible to estate planning. As such, they often believe that a will can do everything necessary to address their property and assets. Unfortunately, there are times when a will is not enough to protect and distribute assets properly.
Instead of wasting time creating a will that might not function, it is better to learn what your will can and cannot cover. Finding out what to include in this key legal tool is not terribly hard unless your financial affairs are complicated. However, many overlook the importance of learning what not to put in their wills.
Property ineligible for inclusion in your will
The examples below can help you begin understanding what a will cannot cover in terms of property. For example, your will cannot include:
- Property jointly owned by you and another party (homes, real estate, etc.)
- Property that is set to transfer to someone else upon your death (bonds, stocks, etc.)
- Financial accounts with designated beneficiaries (retirement plans, insurance policies, etc.)
In short, you may not use a will to address property upon which others have a valid and legal claim. It would not be lawful to distribute these properties through a will because other people own at least a share of them.
Laws governing wills and estate planning in Florida can be complicated, but you can avoid potential problems for yourself and your heirs by seeking help. An estate planning lawyer can fill a vital role of guidance when searching for the best way to distribute your property upon your death. Careful planning ahead of time ensures that your assets go to those you love without causing them undue financial hardships after you die.