26 Sep

Silly Questions? Not When It Comes to Your Will

Manya Deva Natan
Manya Deva Natan is a California Bar Certified attorney with the law firm of SSS Legal & Consultancy Services located in Calabasas, CA. Her practice focuses on International Estates, Trusts and Estates, Asset Protection, Trust Administration, and more. Manya received her law degree from Stanford University, as well as a Master's in International Affairs from Columbia University. She has completed extensive course-work and training in the areas of mental, physical, and emotional health, including being a published author. She is the founder of two publishing-based companies related to health and wellness and has particular interest in the legal and financial components of health and their importance in integrated health. She has appeared multiple times on Good Morning America and is regularly contacted by national media outlets for commentary.
Manya Deva Natan

6a01b8d0a6271d970c01bb0870d148970d-500piIt’s something parents shudder to think about: a will. That’s probably why more than half of Americans with children do not have a legal will. Parents love their children, and the concept of dying and not being there for their children is simply not an option they consider. Establishing a will is a vital part of protecting your financial legacy and there is no benefit in delaying it.


A Forbes article, titled “6 Questions About Wills You Were Afraid To Ask,” gives us some answers to several often-avoided questions to help alleviate some trepidation over wills and to motivate you into creating one for your family. Here are a few of them:


What’s a will? A will is a basic estate planning document that details exactly where you want your assets distributed when you die.


Why should I draft a will?  There’s really no bona fide financial, social, emotional, or any other reason to not draft a will. This sometimes can be difficult for parents to think about, but creating a will allows you peace of mind in knowing that your wishes will be heeded. Without a will, there’s a much greater chance of hard feelings and disputes among your family. Along with a will, an experienced estate planning attorney can help you determine if other planning documents, such as a living will, power of attorney, durable power of attorney (with health care), and a living trust are necessary.


How are assets distributed? If you identified specific gifts you want distributed (like Grandma’s broach) or a conditional gift ($X to your daughter when she reaches a certain age), you can apportion the rest of your estate in shares among your heirs. This can be divided equally or in percentages. The original article also recommends that you select two executors in case your first choice is unable to fulfill an obligation.


What about the children? An extremely critical task in creating a will is selecting a guardian for your minor children. If you die and fail to do so, the court will decide who takes care of your children. You should make sure beforehand that he or she is able and willing to take on this responsibility.



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