Maybe you don’t have a will, even though you’re married, have kids, and a house. You may have had one prepared many years ago. It’s outdated, but you can’t find the time to change it. You probably say and think you care about your family and community. But failing to get that will done shows that you just can’t be bothered. You’d much rather do nothing than help others.
Where there’s a will there’s a way to possibly pass on assets to those you care about, whether that’s a person or nonprofit. After your bills and taxes are paid, what’s left over can be distributed to the beneficiaries in your will. Without a will, those assets will pass to your next of kin, whether you like them or not.
A will can help you in the here and now, even though it goes into effect after you’ve passed away. You might add a charity or church to the beneficiaries. Maybe you have grown grandchildren, so they get money from your estate instead of your kids. Whatever works for you, within limits, should work in a will.
You won’t get your will’s greatest benefits. Assuming your estate can cover all the costs and taxes you leave behind, you will improve the lives of your beneficiaries. They may or may not be related (there are special rules if you want to disinherit immediate family members), but they should be grateful. If some care about you, show them the feeling’s returned.
Your beneficiaries could be someone you know who desperately needs a car or could use all the help she could get to pay for college. You could write a will that’s a random act of kindness to people you know and love. Have some fun with it. Your executor may have the pleasure of handing out money to friends, family, the volunteer ambulance service, or the local cancer support group. The amount can be whatever your estate can afford.
Your estate won’t be able to donate to a favorite charity if you don’t have a will or some other kind of estate planning prepared. COIVD-19 has left many charities strapped for resources because many more people need their help while fewer of us donate. In your will you can name one or many charities. If you can’t take it with you, why not leave for those who need it most?
Your ability to do good may go beyond your estate. If you have life insurance or retirement savings, your spouse may be your beneficiary. If he or she predeceases you, it can go to a beloved family member or nonprofit.
Help to your family goes beyond property or money. With a will your survivors know what you want. If you’re single and without kids, there’s no searching for next of kin. Those in charge of your estate have some direction. They will get satisfaction knowing they’re finishing your unfinished business.
Take the Next Step
If you have any questions about Kentucky inheritance laws, need a will or estate plan, or help with probate, contact The Fleck Firm (270) 446-7000 today. We can put your plans into action through wills, trusts, powers of attorney, and other estate planning documents.