Working, raising a family and getting together with friends often fill the daily lives of Minnesota residents. Creating a will and estate plan may take a backseat to more pressing matters, but if the unexpected happens, having a will can benefit your loved ones.
According to The Office of the Minnesota Attorney General, a will allows for the transfer of your property upon your death. The law does not require that you have a will, but it is a simple way to ensure that you leave money, real estate and other items to the people or organizations you love the most.
When you need a will
Naming your spouse as your beneficiary can save time and prevent your property in its entirety from going through probate. If you want loved ones to have specific items, such as a vehicle, real estate or investment account, a will can ensure that happens. You can also name a guardian for your minor children. If you and their other parent die before they become adults, the state decides where your children live.
Do you have bank accounts, a retirement plan, vehicles and other tangible property? If so, having a will can benefit your loved ones. Even if you do not have a spouse or children, you can leave your assets to other family members, friends or charities.
What happens without a will
If you pass away without a will, state law determines where your property and assets go. Your spouse and children generally take priority. It becomes complicated if you do not have such apparent beneficiaries and probate can become expensive for your heirs.
A will allows you to have a say in who inherits your belongings after you pass away. Depending on your situation, it may become the foundation for an estate plan if you decide to place your assets in a trust.