About 60% of American adults do not have a will. And that is a big deal for the loved ones that they leave behind when they die. Did you know that if you die without a will that you have chosen to leave important decisions regarding your debts, assets, and minor children to the local court that is bound by your state’s laws? Despite what you want to do with your heirloom jewelry, fully paid for home, and your agreement with your sister to raise your children…the state may, and probably will have a very different plan.  

Let me share with you some of the top reasons that you need a will NOW. 

  1. Save time, money, and stress for your loved ones. Almost all estates must go to probate court to begin the legal process of distributing your assets, BUT, if you don’t have a will, this becomes a lengthy (could be years!), costly (your loved ones must keep paying the bills), and complicated deal. So complicated sometimes, that the stress can be cause for many family disputes. Even if your family knew what your wishes were… there are always situations where greed will get the best of them.  
  2. Choose who gets your stuff… AND who doesn’t. The state does not care if you had a falling out with one of your children or if they already received a healthy gift before your death and should not get any more inheritance. Without a will, even an ex-spouse could be entitled to some of your estate!  
  3. Do you have minor children? Who will raise them after you are gone? Will the person you want to have custody, be awarded custody? This is a life altering decision for your children. To me, this is the BIGGEST reason you need a will if you are a parent of a minor child. 

While there are many more fantastic reasons for you to get a will, reasons like the ones mentioned above and ones like, providing for your wishes for your funeral, for how to handle your digital accounts (like Facebook), who gets to take care of your pets and making sure your favorite charity receives a gift from you, still many people put it off. I guess because they think they have plenty of time to think about it, or maybe they think it will be expensive or time consuming to have a will made. But if you are an adult… you simply need a will. And you need it now. 

If you already have a will, then I congratulate you! You may want to ask yourself if it’s time to review it. If you don’t have a will… don’t waste another minute. You can have a will, health power of attorney and finance power of attorney all at the cost of pennies in comparison to the mess you could be leaving behind for your loved ones. As a matter of fact, you can have attorney-built documents from Mama Bear Legal Forms that are legally binding no matter what state you live in for only $198 for both you and your spouse. You can visit Dave Ramsey’s website and get started now. Or of course, you can visit with a local attorney as well. We just happen to like Dave Ramsey and like to support what he promotes and thought you might like to also. 

My final word to you… Run… (don’t walk) and get your peace of mind today! 

-Michelle McEachin