No one likes pondering their own death. Well, very few people anyway! Although sometimes unpleasant, planning ahead is an exceptionally important thing everyone should do.
As I’m sure you know, you’ll need a will to put all of your affairs in order. If the whole subject is a mystery to you, then read on.
Here are the steps you need to take to leaving a will.
I’m sure you can guess the first step. Get the thing written! If you die without leaving a will, there’s no telling what will go to who, and what will become of your assets. To ensure all of your belongings go to the people you intend them for, you need a will that clearly outlines this. Unless you’re a legal professional, I urge you against writing your own will.
Sure there are a lot of DIY will-writing kits and services out there. However, trusting yourself with the whole job can be pretty dangerous. To be 100% sure your will will be executed properly, be sure to hire a solicitor such as Wilson Browne. Remember that your will is a legal document, and has to be worded as such.
The next step is even more dreary, if you can believe that! You need to get all your relevant paperwork together in one place, and ensure that your executor knows where to find it. This could be integral for getting your affairs in order when you’ve passed away. Here, I’m talking about bank statements, deeds to properties, marriage certificates and so on. Basically, anything that has some relevance to your financial situation. Aside from these bits and pieces, it’s a good idea to draw up a list of regular payments, which will need to be cancelled when you’re not around.
While you’re getting this out of the way, it’s good to note down other, non-legal things. For example, who should take care of a pet or what should be done with an uncompleted project. I’ll say again, make sure your executor knows where to find all this!
Finally, try to clear any unsecured debts. If you’ve been dealing with debt for a while, then you’ll know this is easier said than done! Here, when I say ‘unsecured debts’, I mean things like credit cards, and loans which aren’t secured against your property. You may not have much use for money after you’re gone. However, all your creditors certainly will! If you’re able to wipe your debts soon, it’ll make the process so much smoother.
The job of your executor will be much simpler, and you’ll have a little more certainty that everything will get to its intended recipient. At the very least, wiping your debts will mean that the following processes will move much faster. See the National Debt Line for some free advice.
There you have the three most important steps to getting your will in order. Getting it out of the way is tedious, and sometimes a little gloomy. However, the peace of mind you’ll have by the end of it is well worth the effort.
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