When making your estate plan, there are specific things that you should exclude. Otherwise, it could create confusion or delays in the transfer of your assets.
What should I exclude from my will?
- Your funeral plans: Create a separate document in your estate plan detailing your funeral wishes. It allows your family to carry out the ceremony in the way you want without searching through your will to find instructions. It also reduces the chance of a bad atmosphere at your send-off, if some people would be upset about how you divide your estate.
- Assets in a living trust: One of the benefits of a living trust is that assets within it will reach your beneficiaries quicker, as they avoid probate. If you inadvertently include property in your will that you moved to a living trust, it will delay matters.
- Items with named beneficiaries: Some types of financial plans require you to name a beneficiary when you set them up. These may include life insurance policies, retirement plans and payable-on-death bank accounts.
- Funds in joint accounts: Joint accounts you hold with your spouse are theirs to control when you die automatically.
- Anything you wish your pet to have: The law considers pets as a piece of property. Therefore, you cannot leave assets to them directly. You can use a pet trust to ensure the money you leave for your furry friend will be spent on them.
Wills are a vital part of estate planning. An attorney can help you create yours and ensure you only include what you should. They can advise you on the best way to deal with each of your assets to ensure a speedy and efficient transfer to your loved ones when you die.