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Miami Family Law Attorneys:
Your Last Will and Testament & Pre-Need Guardianship
A last will and testament is the most common form of estate planning tool in use, and it is in place to provide us with a mechanism for passing our financial legacies to our loved ones in the manner we see fit. Far from being something that only the landed gentry require, having an estate plan in place can help you protect your family and continue to provide for them even after you’re gone. Further, having a pre-need guardian is the best way to ensure that someone you trust will take over as your guardian in the event of your incapacitation or as the guardian of your minor children in the very unlikely event that they lose both their parents. Together, these legal tools can provide you with the peace of mind you’re looking for, and working closely with an experienced Florida estate planning attorney is the most important first step you can take on the journey forward.
Who Needs a Last Will and Testament
It is a misconception that a last will and testament is only for the very rich. In fact, if any of the following pertain to you, it’s time to think about taking the next step:
- You have children, grandchildren, or other relatives whom you help provide for
- You own real estate (including your home)
- You have money, assets, property, items of value, or precious family heirlooms that you would like to pass to your family and loved ones
- You have married or divorced but haven’t updated your last will and testament since that time
Your Last Will and Testament
You will name a personal representative in your last will and testament, and they will ensure that your will plays out the way that you intended. Your will is your ticket to probate court, where your assets will be distributed according to your wishes (as documented in your last will and testament). If you die without a will, your estate will become what is known as intestate, and it will be distributed according to the state’s intestacy laws, which are not likely to completely align with your wishes (and that may be far off the mark).
An important component of estate planning is addressing the matter of a pre-need guardian who will make important decisions for you regarding your healthcare needs or your financial needs in the event you are unable to do so. The goal is to assign someone whom you trust implicitly in each of these capacities. If you have minor children, it is also important to assign a pre-need guardian who will step into your shoes as a loving caregiver upon your death or incapacitation. The pre-need part of this refers to the requirement to implement the document prior to it being needed. Otherwise, the court will make these very personal and very important decisions on your behalf.
It’s the Right Time to Reach out to an Experienced Florida Estate Planning Attorney
The practiced Florida estate planning attorneys at Costa & Associates understand the impulse to put off your estate planning needs, but we also recognize just how important tackling the matter head-on is, and we’re committed to helping you every step of the way. To schedule your free consultation, please don’t wait to contact or call us at 305-827-0100 today.