It’s easy to assume that you’re too young to need a will, especially if you’re under forty. However, it’s actually quite important that you have this document, and that you keep it updated to reflect your life changes. A will has nothing to do with your age, and everything to do with your familial relationships, assets, and what you’d like to happen after you pass away. If you don’t have a will, it’s time to consider why writing one may be important. Let’s go into a few of those reasons below.
You Should Always Have One Just in Case
It’s important to have a will, no matter your age. A will helps determine what happens to your personal property and dependents in the event that something happens to you. If you’re under 40 and haven’t taken the time to write a will, there’s never been a better time to consider it. A will is a document that helps everyone in your family if something happens to you and can sit quietly in your safe deposit box if it’s not needed. A will is especially important if you own property, have business assets, or have family members that you provide for.
Choose Who Will Take Care of Minor Children
One important function of a will is that it helps determine who will take care of your minor children in the event of your death. This is especially important if you’re divorced, unmarried, or have had custody issues in the past. If you don’t have a will, it’s likely that a family court will determine who takes care of your children, without your input. If you do write one, you’ll at least be able to make your wishes known.
You Can Ensure Everyone You Love is Cared For
If you have plans for your own long-term care, or for the long-term care of your aging loved ones, it’s important to include this in your will. It’s estimated that 70% of individuals who are currently turning 65 will need long-term care in their lifetime, so it’s vitally important to provide for this in this important document. Otherwise, there’s no way to plan for how your loved ones will be cared for after you pass away.
Leave Instructions for Your Digital Property
Creating a will allows you to leave instructions for your online assets as well as your offline ones. This means that if you have social media profiles, websites, or online property that has value, you can clearly list out in your will how you’d like these items to be handled. Your surviving loved ones can then manage your digital property in the way that you’ve specified, instead of guessing at what you’d like done.
You Should Keep Updating It Consistently
It’s important that you update your will on a regular basis because life is continually changing. Your will represents your assets when you pass away, so it’s important to keep it current. An outdated will is simply not as functional, and can actually make resolving your state more difficult for your surviving family members. It is recommended that you update your estate plan once every five years, or every time that you have a major life event like moving states, getting married, or having a child. This helps keep the document up to date so that it can function as well as possible.
If you pass away without a will, managing your estate becomes much more complicated, and is left to your kids or surviving family members. It’s important to take the time to meet with an attorney to draw up this legal document, no matter how old you are. Having a will helps ensure that everything proceeds according to your wishes, even after you pass away.