Probate Lawyer Anchorage, AK 

Probate Lawyer Anchorage, AK - probate stamp on paperwork

In tough financial times, people carefully choose their spending priorities. Surprisingly, many Americans never get around to making a will. This is especially true for younger Americans. Many people assume that creating a will is not necessary, or that it is something that they can put off until much later. Since death is never something we want to discuss or even think about, making a will can be an uncomfortable task. Still, young people – especially young married couples in Alaska and those with children – should strongly consider scheduling a meeting with a probate lawyer in Anchorage, AK who can guide them through the process of setting up an estate plan. It is important to be prepared for any kind of life event, especially since you never know what can happen in the future.

Estate Planning Basics

Many people have a simple idea of what estate planning is, but may not necessarily know about the finer details of what goes into it. In basic terms, estate planning is the process of preparing legal strategies to manage your estate, which includes but is not limited to securing your assets, establishing your heirs, and making decisions on the type of medical care you get when you are elderly. There are many benefits to estate planning, and they not only impact you but your loved ones that survive you. 

One of the estate planning documents that many people are most familiar with are wills, or last will and testament. A will is where you can list your specific instructions for how to manage your estate and which of your possessions and assets that you will give away. In your will, you also include information such as the appointed executor and any beneficiaries. There are many components that go into a will, so you may benefit from getting legal assistance to ensure that your will is complete, valid and mistake-free. The following points are some of the things that you should know about writing wills. 

Wills Do Not Just Control Money

It is a common misconception that if you have little in the way of financial resources, then a will is not necessary. But wills are not just for the wealthy. People from a variety of income and financial backgrounds can benefit from writing a will. Say you have a special family keepsake or two. Do you want them dumped at a pawn shop or left to someone you care about? Or maybe you have specific requests regarding your final arrangements. If you have specific ideas in mind for how you want your assets controlled, a will makes sure your voice is heard. A will often makes it easier for a family to resolve disputes and deal with your possessions, no matter how small your estate. They won’t have to guess what your intentions or interests are because they can just refer to your will. Wills also tell the world what you wanted to be done with those personal possessions.

Couples With Children Should Consider Making a Will

Young couples are often advised that they should invest in a solid term life insurance policy, especially when having children. It is often suggested by financial advisors that one should purchase 10 times their annual income. While life insurance can provide an excellent source of reliable income in the unfortunate event that one or both adults in the home should die prematurely, it cannot set forth how matters will be handled.

Wills can be used to ensure proper distribution of cash savings as well as tangible property. Likewise, many people come to a marriage with special heirlooms that they may not want leaving their own family and ending up in someone else’s possession who is not a blood relation, such as pianos, jewelry, and so forth. A will can be essential in preserving these wishes. An Anchorage, AK probate lawyer can help you draw up a will that will stipulate exactly how you want your estate to be distributed.

Mistakes to Avoid When Writing a Will

When you are writing a will, be clear about what kind of decisions you want made about your estate. For example, if you want to donate to specific organizations, list their names and the amount you want to give. This also applies to your beneficiaries and the type and amount of assets that they will receive. Be as clear as possible in your will so that there are no disputes among your loved ones. Another thing that you should do is update your will after important life events or every couple of years so that it remains up to date. 

Probate is another key area to consider when writing a will. It can be a lengthy and costly process when your estate is subject to probate. There may be ways where you can avoid probate altogether if you are thoughtful and strategic. Get to know your options regarding probate so that you can see whether you are able to bypass it. 

Consulting an Experienced Attorney Is Your Best Choice

The steps to make a will and estate plan vary from state to state, as they each own their own specific requirements for how it should be done. Alaska law has many complex and sometimes misunderstood rules that can lead to the invalidation of improperly drafted wills. Before you get started, you need to know the basics. Get help from a qualified lawyer so that you can receive personalized guidance when you are working on your will. This is a recommended option because they can assist you step by step. Although there are many websites that claim that do-it-yourself wills are just as valid as wills that drafted by a qualified Anchorage, AK probate lawyer, there is absolutely no substitute for consulting with a skilled lawyer. Call Theus Law Offices to schedule a free and confidential consultation and find out how our firm can help. No matter how old you are or where you are in life, it is never too early to schedule a consultation to review your estate plan.