Planning for the future may be a daunting task for some, while others may assume they don’t need long-term plans because they are young, healthy and not particularly wealthy. In reality, having at least a basic will in place is best regardless of one’s individual circumstances. Dying without a will can leave heirs and beneficiaries with the task of intestate succession, a potentially complex and lengthy process.
Don’t die without a will
It is impossible to predict the future, but it is possible to create plans that will allow one a certain amount of control. If a Texas adult passes away without a will or with an invalid will in place, the state’s laws of intestate succession take over. These laws will dictate how the estate will be settled. A probate court will oversee this process, and heir and beneficiaries will have little to no influence over the court’s decisions.
In intestate succession, heirs and beneficiaries only receive their portion of the estate after attorneys have been paid, as well as remaining debts, taxes and liabilities. Having a will allows a Texas adult more specific control over exactly what happens to specific assets and wealth. Intestate succession is generally more complicated and could take more time than testate succession.
With the right plans in place, it will be easier for loves ones, heirs and beneficiaries to navigate the process of settling an estate in the future. Starting the estate planning process can be intimidating, but one does not have to navigate it alone. It may help to work with an experienced attorney throughout the planning process.