Drafting a will is the first and most important step in the process of planning an estate. When a person formalizes his or her wishes in the will, avoiding certain mistakes and hiring an Estate Planning Attorney in De Pere WI can help them ensure the will is legitimate and that their wishes can be carried out. To help clients avoid missteps, below are some of the most severe mistakes made when developing a will.
Including Assets With Designated Beneficiaries
A will should only discuss assets and property that are solely held and do not have a designated beneficiary. This is a mistake because provisions pertaining to those assets are not valid, and they can call the entire document’s validity into question. When drafting a will, a lawyer can help a client sort through their assets and beneficiary designations to determine what should be included.
Forgetting to Notarize and/or Sign the Will
In some areas, grantors must sign the will in front of at least two neutral parties and have the signed document notarized to legitimize it. If these steps aren’t taken, the will may be invalidated in probate court, and the state’s intestacy laws would take over.
Assuming that Probate can be Skipped
Probate is essentially the process by which a will is validated. Assuming that the creation of a will allows beneficiaries to bypass probate is a mistake because it can prevent additional estate planning that can actually allow some assets to skip probate.
Doing it Once and Forgetting About It
Once the will is drafted, the client should plan to regularly update and review it. Leaving it alone can result in outdated plans that name the wrong executor, cover lost assets, or fail to cover new assets. In addition to asset distribution, there are other things to consider when drafting a will. Making the mistake of creating a will without the help of an Estate Planning Attorney in De Pere WI from a firm like the Brabazon Law Office LLC increases the chances that a client will overlook such plans, increasing the stress on family members in the future.