Each state has its own laws on what happens if someone passes without creating their own Will, (known as intestacy laws). As a backup, the state will actually create a Will for you if you don't have one. But the government is rarely the best choice for who will make decisions about your estate after you pass away.
If you are part of a blended family, you might be in for even more bad surprises. Many wrongly think if they die, their spouse automatically gets everything, leaving no reason to write down their own wishes. However, if you also have children when you pass away, your assets may not directly go to your spouse. Depending on circumstances, they might be divided between your spouse and children.
Not having a Will before you pass can leave your spouse inconvenienced and impoverished. This happens to many clients who think because they are the surviving spouse, all assets end up going to them during probate. But instead, it is split between them and any surviving children of the deceased spouse. Tensions can become high when money is involved, and greed can easily take over important decisions, even between family members. Children can waive their rights for the benefit of the surviving parent or stepparent, but it doesn't always work out. Children can assert their rights under the intestacy laws to claim their state, even it if leaves the surviving parent with less. Unfortunately, once you pass away, it is too late to fix things.
One of the biggest reasons a Will is essential is to provide direction for the dreaded probate process. If there isn't a Will, the probate process takes longer, can be extremely expensive, and requires a lot of time dealing with the court. If you have a Will before death, it sets out the plan for what is going to happen and doesn't leave any blank spaces for the court of your beneficiaries to figure out on their own.
Don't let this issue become a reality. We all want our loved ones taken care of, don't leave them in disarray after you pass. Here at The Rosenbauer Law Office, we will guide you through this process so that each of your needs are met. Call us today at 513-463-6789 to get started!