Do you find yourself avoiding estate planning because it makes you uncomfortable? If you put it off too long, though, the court will follow Florida’s intestacy statutes when distributing your property. That means some of your beloved family members and friends might not receive the assets you want to leave them in your estate. Additionally, the court will have to choose a guardian for your minor children, if applicable, putting your kids through extreme stress. Fortunately, you can maintain control by drafting a Last Will and Testament. A Will is a writing, signed by you and witnessed, that meets Florida law requirements.
First, consult with our Florida Wills Attorney to go over your needs. Then, our attorney can draft your Will and discuss other estate planning tools.
Our Miami Wills attorney will customize the document for you. Depending on your situation, you can use your Last Will and Testament to:
You have unique needs and might fail to reach your goals if you create this document yourself. Additionally, creating the document yourself may not meet all the requirements under Florida Law. Thus, reach out to our firm for a consultation with an attorney.
You can use a Will to designate beneficiaries for most of your real and personal property. You can also name a guardian for your minor children and donate some of your assets to charity. However, there are some limitations when drafting a Will.
For instance, you cannot include joint tenancy property, payable-on-death accounts, and assets that already have beneficiaries, such as life insurance payouts. Also, you will not use your Will to distribute property inside of a trust.
Finally, you should avoid including funeral plans in your Last Will and Testament. There is a good chance your loved ones will plan your funeral before accessing your Will. Thus, your plans might not be honored.
Contact our Miami Wills attorney today to learn more about what you can and cannot include in this document. Then, you can get started on creating a Will and other estate planning documents.
If you have minor children, it is essential that you create a Last Will and Testament. You can use the document to name your preferred guardian for your young children, as well as someone to manage their property. You can choose the same person to handle both duties or separate the tasks.
If both parents pass away, the family court judge will consider your designation when choosing a guardian. The judge has the final authority, though, meaning he or she can name someone else. However, if the guardian you choose is deemed fit, the judge will likely follow your wishes.
Consult with our Miami Wills attorney before adding a guardian. Your attorney can go over the guidelines for guardians for minor children to help you select someone the judge is likely to approve for the role.
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The property left in your sole name at death will go through probate and your Last Will and Testament will have to be admitted into probate before the personal representative distributes it to the beneficiaries. If the value of your non-exempt property totals less than $75,000, your estate might be eligible for summary administration. Additionally, this option is available if probate is initiated two or more years after you pass away. Most estates go through the formal administration process, though, which is a much lengthier and costly process compared to summary administration. Then, the personal representative is tasked with filing the Petition for Administration, notifying the creditors, inventorying the assets, and paying the debts. After providing a final accounting, the personal representative can distribute the assets and close the estate. Your Miami Wills attorney can help you set up trusts to limit the impact of probate if you would wish. Additionally, the attorney can guide your personal representative through probate if needed.
You will name a personal representative when drafting your Last Will and Testament. This person will administer your estate, but first, he or she will need the original copy of the document. Thus, storing the Will in a safe but accessible location is essential. Some people choose a safe deposit box at the bank. However, your personal representative might need a court order to open it. That means it could take much longer to initiate probate, forcing your loved ones to receive their inheritance later. Thus, consider storing it in a fireproof and waterproof lockbox at your home. Once you choose a location, let the personal representative know so he or she can access it once you pass away.
The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship.