Naming an executor or personal representative is essential to a will as they will be managing the estate upon death. Alternate executors or personal representatives are also essential as a named executor or personal representative may be unavailable to serve when needed.
The saying you get what you pay for comes to mind here. Unfortunately, the people that end up paying for unintended mistakes of an online, hand-made, or do it yourself will made with software are the testators (person making the will) beneficiaries or heirs.Utah estate planners are able to discuss several important provisions that may not be included in a homemade will such as guardianship for children, tax responsibilities, affect of simultaneous death of both spouses, executor powers, disinheriting individuals to avoid hard feelings and will contests, and more.
In essence, wills direct the disposition of property, and assets upon death. Wills also express who should be a child’s guardian in case parents die. What's more, a will is revocable and amendable during one’s lifetime and only takes effect upon death. Furthermore, there are several non-standard types of wills, i.e., joint wills (irrevocable contract upon death – bad), holographic wills (hand-written), and nuncupative (spoken), among others that should be avoided unless there is an extraordinary circumstance.
In sum planning for and executing a will is an important step in putting your final matters in order, which helps ones family through a difficult time during a stage of life that many seek to avoid. Having a will provides invaluable peace of mind as one knows their wishes and desires will be known after they have passed. No one should die intestate (without a will), which can be remedied by the creation of a will especially if they are parents to minor children. Having a will is essential though it is always a good idea to find out whether a trust is needed as well.
Creating a valid, effective and thoughtful will begins in the planning stage. Planning and creating a will requires an understanding of testamentary capacity, intent, how to dispose of property, naming of an executor / personal representative, guardianship provisions for children, witnesses and how to properly execute the will with a notary acknowledgment.
Most people understand a will disposes of property but Utah's unique dynamic makes providing guardians for children an essential aspect to families needing a will in Utah.
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