No matter what stage of life you are in, estate planning is important. Following the COVID-19 pandemic, younger people are realizing this more, while older generations are not. According to Caring.com, the number of young adults with a will has increased by 63% since 2020, while middle- and older-aged adults are less likely to have a will now than they were just one year ago. Having a will in place is good for not only you but your loved ones as well.
At Adams, Cassese & Papp, L.L.C., my team is here for you wherever you are in the estate planning process. I use my experience to give individuals and families the trusted direction they need in real estate, wills, & estate law. I proudly serve clients in Perth Amboy, Sayreville, or Woodbridge, New Jersey. Contact me to schedule a free consultation.
There are four common types of wills that you can draw up with your attorney:
Testamentary Trust Will
Let’s dive into each type and discuss the differences.
A simple will is the most common type of will. This will dictates where your assets will go after you pass, as well as assign guardianship for any minor children that you have.
A living will, as the name suggests, has to do with important decisions while you are alive. Living wills can also dictate medical choices if you are incapacitated and who can make such decisions on your behalf.
A testamentary trust will is helpful if you have beneficiaries who are still minors. This type of will places some assets into a trust for your beneficiaries and names someone to oversee the trust. You can place conditions on the inheritance as well.
A joint will is a will combined will for two people, often a married couple. The will dictates that the entire estate goes to the surviving spouse. If the estate is not complicated and you and your spouse are in agreement on what you want to happen after you pass, this can be a good option.
Wills have similar basic components, including:
How your estate should be distributed. This is the most prominent aspect of a will. Your estate can be distributed in a variety of ways — among siblings, parents, children, spouses, and even charities. When it comes to commonly inherited assets, this usually involves property such as houses, cars, and special heirlooms.
Details of your assets
Guardianship details (if minor children are involved)
Having a will is important because it provides security for your loved ones after you pass. Losing a loved one is tough, and when there is no will, the state decides what happens to their property. Dying without a will (called die intestate), requires the closest living relative to file for estate administration in order to have any say in what happens. It makes everything more difficult during the probate process, instead of your wishes already being clearly laid out on paper.
Your will is also important for the probate process. Probate is the judicial process through which a will is proved in court. After probate, the will is accepted as a valid public document, and the estate is settled.
Wills are a large part of estate planning, but trusts play a key role as well. A will is a legal document that dictates what happens to your estate after you pass. A trust is a legal document that protects the assets of your estate even while you are alive. In a trust, you (the trustor) gives another person (the trustee) the right to hold title to property or assets for the benefit of third parties.
My firm — Adams, Cassese & Papp, L.L.C. — has helped countless clients with their estate planning needs in and around Perth Amboy, Sayreville, and Woodbridge, New Jersey for more than 40 years. I am ready to help you prepare a detailed estate plan or to review, update, and augment an existing plan. Reach out today to get started.