Do you have a will?
You need one. And here’s why:
My name is Tanner Brooks. I’m an attorney at law here in South Bend, IN.
Today, I’m writing to talk to you about wills. Most people know what a will is. And you may even know why it’s important, but I’m always amazed at the number of people I meet who don’t have a will in place.
Without a will, you’re leaving the future of your property, wealth, and any minor children up to the choices of a court system. Without a will, you have no say in any of these important decisions. Instead you become the victim of circumstance.
Often people don’t have a will because they don’t know what they need. Below I’ll give you the information you need to understand wills better.
Why does a Will Matter?
Without a will……
You become the victim of the legal system. Instead of you deciding where your assets go, the judge relies on antiquated and often unfair systems set in place by the government.
You have literally no say in how your assets are distributed.
The legal nightmare can be incredibly expensive and emotionally exhausting for your family. Attorneys get involved costing thousands of dollars. Not to mention the emotional cost on your family of potential conflicts and legal battles.
A Will Allows You to Name the Beneficiaries of Your Property
A will allows you to decide who gets your property. Without a will, you have virtually no say over who receives which parts of your estate.
Not only does a will give you control, but it prevents conflict among family members. Unfortunately without a will in place, I often see families get immersed in conflict. Family members fight over property instead of valuing the relationships they have.
Having a will helps reduce the likelihood of conflict. Instead of family fighting, you get to decide how your property is distributed among your heirs upon your death.
A good will isn’t just there for the property, it helps reduce conflict within the family. Can you put a price on that?
A Will Determines Who Takes Care of Your Minor Children
Often people think a will should only be made as you age. But if you have a young family, a will allows you to decide who takes care of your kids should the unspeakable happen.
As a parent, you want to know that your kids are being provided for. A will helps you ensure your family is provided for – even if you’re no longer there to provide for them.
Without a will, a court will make the decision on who takes care of your kids. Do you really want a court with no prior knowledge of your family making such an important decision?
A Will Ensures Your Heirs Can Afford Paying Taxes
They say there are only two things for certain in life – death and taxes. In your will, you can make arrangements for how any taxes will be paid upon your death.
The last thing you want to happen is to leave property and resources with your family, but they have to then sell it to pay a huge tax burden. Without proper planning, estate taxes (know often as the “death tax”) can leave a huge dent in the inheritance you’ve worked so hard to provide.
But taking taxes into consideration as you create your will ensures you know how taxes will be paid for your inheritance. A little bit of preparation can actually help you save significantly on your taxes. That means more of your wealth gets passed along and less goes to the government.
A Will Can Put Property Into A Trust Immediately Upon Your Death
Trusts are amazingly powerful legal tools. When done correctly, they can help minimize estate taxes and allow for huge levels of control of your assets.
When paired with a trust, your will allows you to create a seamless transition for your assets. By using the laws on the books already, you can maximize the wealth transfer to your heirs and minimize the legal and tax burden.
How much does a Will Cost?
One of the most common reasons people don’t get a will is that they are afraid of the costs.
At Brooks Legal, a basic will starts out at just $550. On top of that, our initial consultation is completely free. And you’ll know how much you’ll spend on a will before we start.
We want to make this process as seamless as possible. A will is a very personal thing, and we respect you.
Ready to Find Out More?
If you’d like to ensure your property is prepared for the future, please give me a call at 574-383-9544.
I’ll be happy to sit down with you, answer your questions, and talk you through the process of developing your will.
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About Tanner Brooks:
Tanner is passionate about helping families ensure their legal needs are met. As an attorney, he has seen first hand the complexity caused by poor legal planning. He’s committed to helping families enjoy the present and prepare for the future.
Tanner graduated magna cum laude from Indiana Wesleyan University in December of 2012. A native of Indiana, Tanner grew up with the midwestern mentality of hard work, dedication, and loyalty.
In 2016, Tanner graduated from Indiana University’s Maurer School of Law. At Maurer, he competed in the prestigious Sherman Minton Moot Court competition, and was an Associate on the nationally-ranked flagship journal; the Indiana Law Journal (“ILJ”). While in law school, Tanner interned for multiple private defense contracting corporations in the District of Columbia. In addition, he interned for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan located in Detroit, Michigan. These experiences and others have provided Tanner with experience working in both the judicial and legislative branches of state and federal government.