If you are planning to create your will, you might wonder how to talk about this to family members who live at a distance. The upcoming holiday season may provide the solution.
The holidays bring families together. With everyone in one place, you can initiate a conversation about the will. You can talk to the family about your wishes and listen to their feedback.
About your will
Your will provides instructions concerning the distribution of your property after you die. It will name your beneficiaries and what assets you want them to receive. It will give direction for the payment of your debts and instruction for the disposition of any real property you own. It can name guardians for your minor children and caretakers for your pets.
What happens without a will
If you die intestate—without a will—the state will decide who inherits your assets. For example, If you are single and have no children, your assets will go to your parents or your siblings. If you are in a domestic relationship, your assets will not go to your partner but to your biological family members.
The holidays and a family conversation
If your family is gathering during the holiday season, let them know in advance that you would like to take some time to discuss your will. Your family members will have questions and opinions. Create an outline of what you want to include in the will. Tell everyone your plans, then listen to their ideas, some of which you may wish to act on. A family discussion will be invaluable as you meet with your attorney to draft your will, and you will be glad you took advantage of the family coming together over the holidays.