Don’t have a will? Don’t delay!
As I listened to the financial news the other morning, I was shocked to hear that Aretha Franklin, who was ill for some time and owned a large catalog of music, died without a will. Please don’t do that! Her family, lawyers, and the courts, will now out every aspect of her estate, and attempt to find solutions to the various distribution, tax, and legal issues which now cannot be decided by Ms. Franklin, or even her family independently, but must follow intestate laws. It can be expected that this process will be lengthy, and require burdensome–and unnecessary–judicial proceedings.
When I first began writing wills decades ago, one of my legal mentors spoke wisely on this issue: “Everyone dies with a will–they either write one themselves, or the government writes a will for them through the intestacy laws.” And when the government “writes a will” through the intestacy laws, it does so with utterly no individualized considerations, but rather through a web of laws which are designed for the populace at large, including the rich and the poor, the married or unmarried, and those with or without children/grandchildren.
As we’ve discussed in past newsletters and articles (as found on our website) the advantages of writing a will in a competent, professional manner, are enormous and simply cannot be overlooked. As part of our Estate Administration practice, we frequently deal with wills of decedents which were created online with seriously inadequate planning and often cost more in probate-related costs than a professionally drafted will at the outset. Proper drafting of a will can prevent substantial administrative costs, unnecessary tax exposure, distribution issues, family discord, and dangers to vulnerable individuals such as minors or individuals who are disabled. Our website includes our fee schedule for drafting wills, and these costs are not only highly competitive in the legal industry, but inevitably save families significant sums through proper planning.
Don’t delay on this issue! Our estate planning questionnaire can be found at the following link: http://mcandrewslaw.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/Estate-Planning-Questionnaire-Updated-March-2018.pdf. You need only send the completed questionnaire to us, and we can schedule an appointment expeditiously to begin your process of securing some well-deserved peace of mind.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to call us at 610-648-9300 or contact us by clicking here.