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Dying Without a Will Can Have Unintended Consequences

Posted by Zach Dana on July 25, 2018

If you pass away without an estate plan or will in place, it may result in a state of chaos for your loved ones. Without a formal will, your property may be passed along using a process referred to as intestate succession, which is designed to distribute your possessions based on the way an average person may follow.

Unfortunately, this distribution method may be significantly different from your actual wishes and there are not any exceptions based on known wishes, special circumstances or needs. This is why having an estate plan is the best way to make sure your wishes are carried out after you have passed away.

What will Happen if You Don’t Have a Will?

According to intestate succession, the property you own will go to your family members, which includes your descendants. This means that in addition to your children and spouse getting your possessions, other family members, such as siblings, parents, grandchildren and others may also receive some of your assets. If there are no living relatives to give your assets to, then the assets will be turned over to the state. In the majority of situations, if you don’t have a will, all of or most of your estate is going to pass on to your spouse, with the remainder going to your descendants or parents. If you have no spouse, then your estate will go to your children.

Will Substitutes

A will substitute is a way to make sure that certain expenses are covered or that certain people will receive the funds after you pass away. A will substitute refers to a legal way to transfer your property to your beneficiary. An example of this is your life insurance policy where you designate your beneficiary. The person will receive the funds, even if you have a will and the individual was omitted from it.

Using the Services of an Attorney

It is crucial that you create a will. In most cases, the cost of this will be low and will ensure your family members can avoid the hassle mentioned above. In some cases, it can also be beneficial for you to work with an attorney. They can help ensure you get the results you need and that you don’t have to worry about the consequences of not having something in writing in place after you have passed away. The peace of mind this provides alone is well worth the expense that you may incur by doing this. To learn more, contact the Dana Law Group at 1-800-381-8132.