Regardless of whether you have considerable assets, making sure you have a will in the event of your death is essential to ensure that your wishes are properly carried out after your passing. There are many sites on the internet that claim you can create your own will for little or no cost. However, seeking the services of lawyers who deal with wills ensures that all your legal bases are covered.
DIY Will or Lawyer?
There are many important things to consider when preparing a will. Although a will is not legally required in Pennsylvania, a valid last will and testament can help your estate navigate the probate process more easily. Without a will, laws of intestacy (state laws) determine the distribution of an estate’s assets, which can lead to family conflict and a long, drawn out process. Unfortunately, if you are not well-versed in how probate works if you write your own will you may end up making the process more challenging for your loved ones. Probate and estate lawyers know the ins and outs of this court-supervised process, and can assist you with not only creating a proper will, but also help your family when the time comes to distribute your estate.
Some issues that can arise if you choose to forego estate planning and prepare your will without the assistance of a qualified attorney include:
If you become incapacitated, your loved ones may not be aware of your wishes. Powers of attorney, living wills, and advance directives are vital legal documents that ensure your finances, health care and end-of-life decisions will be handled according to your desires. An experienced estate planning attorney will take into account all of your wishes and put them on paper, so there is no ambiguity if you need someone else to make these decisions for you. Having these important documents in place will also make a difficult time easier for your loved ones.
You may not be aware that certain types of trusts can keep some of your assets from having to go through probate, cut court costs, save time and help your family avoid paying some types of inheritance taxes. This is just one reason why seeking the services of a knowledgeable estate planning attorney is so important.
If you want to include a testamentary trust in your will, you may create the trust incorrectly and end up causing more headaches for your loved ones down the road. Having an independent third party who understands the complexities of estate planning review your financial and family circumstances will ensure that your wishes are accurately reflected and that your estate is distributed in as efficient a manner as possible.
The experienced attorneys at Carosella and Associates take your entire estate and family situation into account, and can help you create an effective will and personalized estate plan that fits your needs. For top-notch estate planning services in West Chester, PA contact us today.