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  1. #1
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    Is it important to have a will?

    I am concerned as I get older to make sure the legal affairs around my life are in order. I was wondering if anyone else was concerned about wills, doing it yourself, are hiring a lawyer! The cheapest way is to do it yourself, I am concerned I would not do it properly and miss something important. I also wondered how do you decide who is going to do what in case of emergency? Suggests and information would be helpful. I have to update my will, so it was why I am wondering?

  2. #2
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    Re: Is it important to have a will?

    It's always important to have a will, hon. That way, if something does happen to you your wishes are known. If there's nothing to direct your loved ones in what you would want, they're sorta left to fend for themselves, and that's very difficult.

    It's a good idea, if you can afford to do so, to have an attorney's help when preparing a will. That just insures that all the little loose ends are tied up to your satisfaction. That way, there are no lingering questions to cause problems for those who are left to deal with things.

    As far as what will happen in an emergency, I presume you mean an illness or accident that leaves you unable to make decisions as to whether or not you wish to have extreme measures taken to keep you alive. That would involve an Advance Directive (Living Will or Power of Attorney). Most hospitals have staff that can help you with that sort of thing, as can an attorney. There are also forms available on the internet, I believe. Try putting Advance Directive and your place of residence into Google and see what you can come up with. Everyone should have an Advance Directive, in my opinion. Some people want everything done to keep them alive, while others do not wish such things. It's something to think through thoroughly.

  3. #3
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    Re: Is it important to have a will?

    Will planning is a very important part of administering the business of life. Though many people tend to neglect it, people should always have an up to date will and the will should be revised to keep it up to date every three to five years.

    Depending on the Country, State or Province in which you live, the law is different and the requirements vary.

    There are brochures available from your local bank or trust company and even some large law firms have free templates you can fill out. In addition there are will kits that can be bought from software companies like Intuit, the company that develops Quicken and Tax software. Other will kits are sold in book stores and software houses.

    The necessity of a will is not dependent on the size of the estate, but instead a will is drawn up to protect your estate from unnecessary taxation, and to protect your heirs from the monumental task of locating all your assets in the event of your death.

    A properly drawn up will contains the list and location of all your assets, along with your instructions for disposal.

    If your estate is substantial, it is worth a visit to a Trust Company, to visit their Estate Management Department which can advise you on proper disposition of your assets, while taking your wishes into account.

    If you are planning a will, it is also time to think about bequests to the medical institutions that may have helped you and your family.

    Have a look at this posting for some perspectives

  4. #4
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    Re: Is it important to have a will?

    Even God has one... it says so in The Lord's Prayer:

    "Thy will be done
    on Earth
    as it is in Heaven"

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    Re: Is it important to have a will?

    I like the quote by Dr. Baxter (who I will nickname Doc)
    TSOW thank you for the information I will look into the legal end because each province being different.
    And the bank /trust company, it is important to research it out for sure.
    ThatLady I will do the google search and advance directives, I want to make sure I have everything in order so it will not burden anyone! My mother passed away without a will so it was alot of legal paper work. My grandmother had a will, I was not in it, her children all were still alive. I just want everything to be done right, so like I said no one is burden.
    It is alot to even find people who want to be apart of any decides around wills. Power of Attorney/Wills, many do find it a difficult topic to discuss.
    The details may be part of that reason, are just knowing what is legally expected of them if you choose someone who has never been part of a will.
    Most of the people I know do not even have wills.
    That to me seemed to be a scary thought!

  6. #6
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    Re: Is it important to have a will?

    You are right about that...I think of wills totally differently now since all this upheaval with my grandmother's death. Now I say definitely (for the love of your survivors) write a will, be as specific as humanly possible, include a detailed advanced directive, specify what you want done with remains, etc. Once someone is gone the surviving family is thankful for every little piece of direction of what the deceased wanted done.

    I say definitely get a lawyer too. I wonder at what age you should write a will?

  7. #7
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    Re: Is it important to have a will?

    Quote Originally Posted by David Baxter
    Even God has one... it says so in The Lord's Prayer:

    "Thy will be done
    on Earth
    as it is in Heaven"
    This cracked me up

  8. #8
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    Re: Is it important to have a will?

    Hi Toeless,
    I think if your over 18 years of age it may be a good idea, definitely if you have your own place, and support yourself!
    It may be important, to let someone you trust know your wishes.
    I am sure it is different in the United States.
    You may have to search at the state level.
    What the legal age could be, it may be 21?
    Great question, just so you have an idea I started my own will, at 18 years of age.
    I revisited it after several years, like about 20 years later. Now that I am in my 40's, I notice I had friends without wills.
    Good Luck in finding out about wills.
    Have a nice weekend.

  9. #9
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    Re: Is it important to have a will?

    In addition to a will that describes ones wishes after death, it is just as important to put together a living will to describe one's wishes while living, but if one is unable to make their wishes known....such as being in a coma.

    Here are two resources that can provide examples and directives on setting up a valid living will.

    In the U.S. for State specific living will wording, visit LEGALDOCS

    In Canada, for a living will that can be tailored to conform to the requirements of each Province, visit University of Toronto Center for Bio-Ethics

    U of T has the following available as PDF downloadable documents:

    • University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics Living Will
      University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics Cancer Living Will
      University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics HIV Living Will
      Testament de vie du Centre conjoint de bio?thique de l'Universit? de Toronto (in French)
      Testamento di Vita del Joint Centre for Bioethics (in Italian)

  10. #10
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    Re: Is it important to have a will?

    it is just as important to put together a living will to describe one's wishes while living
    I've tried that (e.g., wishes about dry vs. wet garbage, emptying the dishwasher, cleaning the cat box, not taking towels down to their bedrooms and dumping then on the floors, etc.) but my sons pretty much ignore my wishes. Is there a Plan B?

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