Airstud From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 2146 posts, RR: 1 Reply 5, posted (3 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1318 times:
It's true, Ajd1992; most of the time when people die it's not because they've planned it.
However, at your age, it's unlikely that you've amassed very much in the assets department, making a will and testamament a bit superfluous.
I don't have too much either; apart from my cash balance pension and my 401(k). I really ought to take steps to ensure that dough goes to my little nephew and niece in case anything happens to me. What is the most sensible, inexpensive way to set up a little will in California? I rent rather than own, so my estate is currently worth less than $100,000.
(heck maybe there's real estate worth less than that these days...)
SmithAir747 From Canada, joined Jan 2004, 1610 posts, RR: 31 Reply 6, posted (3 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1315 times:
I have thought of writing up my own will. I am age 34 (soon to be 35). I am single and a grad student in a doctoral programme. I have heard that I should leave a will, no matter my situation. Is that right? Also, I have medical issues.
I have meagre economic assets. But I do have a "museum" of medical instruments used on me and other historical items from my life. I have my car, my piano, organ, green violin, and other musical instruments, etc. I would like to leave those with my loved ones. My Bible is another special thing I want to leave with the right people.
I am writing my autobiography, and would include any royalties I ever get from it someday in my will.
A major complication is that I live in California, and have no family out here. All my family (Mom and siblings) live in Indiana. That might introduce legal complications, being an "interstate" will. And, I do not know how long I will remain in California, after I get my PhD and go on possibly somewhere else.
However much I have, I would like to leave it to my church, craniofacial research, and my family/loved ones.
Is it advisable for me to go ahead and have some kind of will?
I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... (Psalm 139:14)
LTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 12673 posts, RR: 13 Reply 8, posted (3 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 1303 times:
Even if you have a relatively small amount of assets, like $10,000 in cash, stock, any real property or other property of value a will can save a lot of problems. In almost all USA states and some countries, if one dies without a will, certain laws will automatically kick in to distribute monies in certain formulas as to a parent if a minor, to a spouse, parents and siblings or to others down the family per the law if there was no immediate beneficiaries after any debts and funeral costs are paid for. That would involve the supervision of a court (Surrogates Court in same USA states) to supervise the allocation. A will can help a lot with preventing persons who you don't want to get or shouldn't get your money. I would advise to get an attorney, 'do it yourself' wills can have serious flaws that can cause expensive complications. A will should also designate a replacement or successor beneficiary if one main beneficiary passes away as well as successor Executor or Co-Executors designated.
One should also draft, revise or redo their will if they have major changes in their lives or in the lives of their beneficiaries. For examples: if get engaged, get married or have a civil union with a same gender partner, or get divorced, have or adopt children, if a designated beneficiary dies or get married, gets government disability or certain income based benefits. Sometimes you just don't want your someone in the family to get the money if you die for personal reasons.
While you are getting your will done, don't forget to have prepared 2 other important documents. One is a 'Medical Directive', sometimes called a 'Living Will', to make sure your wishes are carried out as to if you do or do not want extraordinary measure take to keep you alive as well make medical decisions if your unable to do so. Second is a 'Power of Attorney' to allow someone (including an attorney) to take care of your financial business or make other important decisions if you become incapacitate temporarily or long term.
Also don't forget to designate and update as needed any designated beneficiaries of any employee 401(k) or other retirement benefits, beneficiaries of any life insurance as well as certain investments.
I would note that it wasn't until my father died in 2007 and me at age 52 to do all of the above or update 401(k) or life insurance beneficaries. Don't you wait so long.
DXing From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 9, posted (3 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 1267 times:
Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 3): Age doesn't matter. If you have any kind of liquidity, you should have a will. Even if it's two lines bequeathing everything to your parents, it should be done.
I believe that since he is still 17, he is still considered a minor so anything he has would automatically become his parents who are his legal guardians.
Wills are good things if you are single but if you are married I would advise a trust at some point to further protect your assets from the government. My father had one and it worked out very well. No probate court or lawyer needed. I set mine up right after that.
PPVRA From Brazil, joined Nov 2004, 8761 posts, RR: 42 Reply 10, posted (3 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1251 times:
Quoting DXing (Reply 9): Wills are good things if you are single but if you are married I would advise a trust at some point to further protect your assets from the government. My father had one and it worked out very well. No probate court or lawyer needed. I set mine up right after that.
Definately meet with a knowledgeable tax CPA to get those things, including wills, set up. No idea if you did or not, just make sure you did/do, and anyone else reading this does the same. There are issues you'd never think of that a CPA can help you navigate through.
I'm sure the same applies to every country in the planet.
[Edited 2010-01-18 20:48:04]
"If goods do not cross borders, soldiers will" - Frederic Bastiat
MadameConcorde From San Marino, joined Feb 2007, 10502 posts, RR: 38 Reply 14, posted (3 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 1212 times:
I am not sure what my country of citizenship has in terms of wills. I would have to look it up. I do not want anything of mine to go to any family members. However I am thinking of giving some of my valuables to my "god"daughter in Japan especially art works and artifacts and my collection of textiles.
Now thinking about my aviation collectibles and memorabilia, I have a very nice collection with a lot of rarities especially relating to Concorde. I am thinking of having them go to a Museum but not any Museum. It will have to be a Museum that will add value to the collection and displaysome of the pieces in their exhibits.
For the rest, I don't really care. Money comes and goes. The system can crash any moment so I am not attached to money, for me it is just a tool, an instrument, not something to be collected in mass as the value can disappear from one day to the next.
There was a better way to fly it was called Concorde
Once your body has been used on earth what else is it good for? If I can give life to others through research or organ donation when I die that's one of the greatest things I can do.
After that my body is only a financial burden to my family. We aren't religious and don't really think our bodies are sacred things after we die so cremation is the best and cheapest option. They can spread my ashes wherever they want. My family thinks the same about themselves.
My family has all discussed when we die we all want the same thing. Simple and honorable, really.