I am Young and Healthy, Do I Need a Will?
When you are young and enjoy good health, preparing a will is likely the last thing on your mind. After all, it could be decades before you need to consider such things. As a person recently out of high school or college, you may have little to no financial assets as well. However, preparing a will does not just dictate where your money goes. It also ensures that others follow your wishes should you meet an untimely death.
Below are six reasons to consider making a will, even if you are still in your late teens or 20s:
- You experience a serious accident or illness that puts you in a persistent vegetative state: While no one expects this to happen to them, it sadly does occur all too often. Without a will, families can splinter from the strain of trying to decide whether you would want to continue to exist in this state. A will gives you the chance to name a power of attorney for your financial affairs as well. This is especially important if you have an unmarried partner or no partner and want to assign the role to a family member.
- You desire to leave money or personal property to a specific charity: Even though you might not have a lot of money right now, you feel passionate about supporting certain charitable organizations to the best of your ability. Preparing a will ensures that this happens.
- You want your pets to go to certain people: If you have pets, they will need immediate care from someone else in the event of a worst-case scenario. Without this stipulation, your survivors may fight over your pets or they could end up in an animal shelter. It will give you valuable peace of mind to put your pet care wishes in writing.
- You want to provide clear guidance on what to do with online accounts: What will happen to your social media accounts? The younger you are, the more likely it is that you have multiple social media accounts. If something happened to you suddenly, would you want them to stay online? Perhaps some of the accounts include personal information that you wouldn’t want to display indefinitely. Listing your social media accounts and specific instructions on what to do with them in case of an untimely death is the only way to know for sure that they will not continue on against your wishes.
- You plan to enter the military: Even if you are only 18 years old, you should plan to draft a will before you leave for military duty. At a minimum, it should include a healthcare directive and assignment of a financial power of attorney.
- You want things to go as smoothly as possible for your family if you die suddenly: Even thought you might not have a lot of money or possessions yet, anything you do have goes to probate if you don’t have a will. For example, if you just purchased a home or another piece of real estate property, it could be months before ownership of the asset can be transferred to the proper recipients for liquidation or another designated purpose. With a will, this process would go much more smoothly.
You Can Always Change Your Will
You are at a stage of life where a lot of things will probably change over the next few years. Maybe you are still in college and plan to get married as soon as you graduate. You may also buy a house of your own and/or have children before your 20s end. At Smith & McGhee, Attorneys at Law, we recommend preparing a simple will now that can later be changed to reflect your future life circumstances.
Preparing a will for the first time may seem overwhelming, but it need not be all that complicated. Whether you are just starting out your independent adult life or you are a bit older, our experienced wills and trusts attorneys are here to help.
Contact Smith & McGhee to Learn More
It is easier than you might think to get started with preparing a will. We invite you to contact us at our Dothan, Alabama office at 334-702-1744 to schedule a consultation. One of our wills and trusts attorneys will explain the process in more detail and help you with the proper steps.