August is National Make-A-Will Month. Who knew?
It’s a fact approximately half of Americans do not have wills. Many people think they don’t need an estate plan because they are “too poor” or “too young” or because “everything will go to my spouse when I die anyway.”
Regardless of what people think, everyone has an “estate” and needs an “estate plan.” Your estate is simply all of your money and property at a given point in life. If you don’t have a will, your money and property will be distributed according to state law when you die. This may be fine for some people, but can have serious, unintended consequences for others.
Think about the following scenarios:
- A couple has been together for many years, but is not married. One partner dies without a will and the other is forced to vacate the home as the law in their state won’t allow the other partner to inherit the property.
- A widower can no longer handle his financial affairs. A caretaker convinces the widower to give him large amounts of cash. When the family learns what has happened, the money needed to provide future care is gone.
- A young couple tragically dies in a car accident. Without a will, the state decides what happens to their young children.
- A widow has an adult son who cannot manage his own financial affairs. When the widow dies without a will, the son inherits the entire estate. Within a few years the assets are gone, and the son is broke.
These are just a few examples of what can happen when people put off creating an estate plan. If you don’t have a will, take steps this month to create one – and enjoy the peace of mind that comes from having a plan in place that protects you and your loved ones.
For more information contact Colleen Cushard at 513-721-4700 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted in: Estate Planning