At first glance, writing a will may seem like a relatively straightforward process. However, deciding who should inherit your property and leaving behind precise instructions can be deceptively complex, which is why most people put their faith in an estate law attorney to ensure success and clarity. Here are a few key features to keep in mind when preparing your last will and testament.
Important Considerations When Writing a Will
1. Choosing an Executor
Of all the decisions you’ll have to make when writing a will, selecting an executor is one of the most important. The individual you choose will be responsible for carrying out the instructions in your will, settling debts, and guiding your estate through probate. Although you may be tempted to nominate someone with whom you share a special relationship, it’s always best to choose a responsible person with strong organizational skills.
2. Deciding Which Assets to Leave to Your Beneficiaries
It’s easy to overlook assets when preparing your will, so start by listing all of your most important belongings. This includes especially valuable assets as well as items of sentimental value. If you have an ownership stake in a business or share a home with your spouse, remember you can only bequeath your share of those assets in your will.
3. Ensuring the Legal Validity of Your Will
Each state has different rules determining the validity of a will. In South Carolina, for example, a will must be signed by at least two witnesses, but other jurisdictions might require the signature of a notary or attorney. A simple mistake in the final phases can cause the probate court to declare your will invalid, potentially triggering bitter family conflicts and protracted litigation.
Since 1989, the Law Offices of Adrian L. Falgione, LLC has been helping clients throughout the Lexington, SC, area plan their estates. Whether you’re writing a will or navigating the probate process for the first time, their attorneys will deliver the personalized service and well-rounded legal advice you need. Visit their website for more on their broad array of services, like their Facebook page for updates and tips, or call (803) 957-6543 to arrange your initial consultation with an accomplished attorney today.