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Estate Planning: Wills

A will is the centerpiece of most estate plans. It is a valuable tool for distributing your assets to your loved ones. For some people, a will is all they need for their estate plan. However, most people will benefit from additional protections. An experienced lawyer can help you explore the options that will best meet your goals.

At Allender & Allender, our attorneys are dedicated to helping people through the estate planning process. Call our main office in Titusville at 321-529-2448 to schedule an initial consultation.

What Can A Will Accomplish?

A will communicates a person’s final wishes regarding their assets. It outlines what should be done with their possessions, whether they are left to another person, a group of people or donated to charity. A will also outlines what should happen to any dependents who may be left behind.

A will is written while a person is still alive and is carried out after he or she has passed away. A proper will must satisfy the requirements of Florida law. A still-living person must be designated as a personal representative (sometimes referred to as an executor or executrix), and is responsible for administering the estate. The personal representative is usually supervised by the probate court to ensure that the terms of the will are properly carried out.

It is important to note that a will does not avoid probate. However, it prevents the state of Florida from designating beneficiaries and the personal representative, which happens when a person passes away without a will.

What Else Can You Include In A Will?

Aside from the different assets you’d like your beneficiaries to receive and the name of your executor, you can also put the following in a will: 

  • Guardians: If you have young children, you can list the person or people you would like to name as their legal guardian should you pass.
  • Account information: Passwords to bank/financial accounts, social media, cloud service accounts and any other crucial accounts an executor may need access to.
  • Assets and liability information: Any information you have about how much you have and how much you owe, as well as any specific instructions you would like your executor to take based on this information.
  • Business succession instructions: If you own a business, having information on what you want to happen to your business after you pass is crucial. You can include information like who you would like to take over your business and how to facilitate that transition.

These are only a few examples of what to include in your will. If you have more questions about what you can consist of or what you would like to include, call us at 321-529-2448.

Are There Different Types Of Wills?

Yes, you can choose to include several types of wills in your estate plan. They include:

  • Simple Will: This is the most basic type of will. It typically states what assets your beneficiaries will get when you pass and how those assets will be distributed to those beneficiaries.
  • Pour-Over Will: This type of will works alongside a living trust. It allows any asset not placed in your trust to be put into a trust when you pass.
  • Living Will: This type of will helps you address crucial medical decisions if you were to become mentally incapacitated. It can specify anything from how you would like specific medical treatments and procedures handled to providing instructions for end-of-life care.

There are more than these types of wills available. Contact us today, and we can help you evaluate all of your options and choose one based on your circumstances.

Contact Our Attorneys For Help With Estate Planning

Speak with us to learn more about the benefits of a will and other estate planning tools. Call 321-529-2448 or contact us online. With offices in Titusville, Cocoa Beach and Oviedo, we serve clients across central Florida.