Not everyone has a Will. Here’s why everyone should: If you die without a Will, the people who inherit may not be those you want to get your money or personal property when you die! This could include remote relatives who you haven’t spoken to in years. If the Public Administrator is appointed, they will auction or dispose of your intimate personal property. If so, your family may never have an opportunity to receive, and pass on, irreplaceable items which may have been left to you.
If you die without a Will, your estate will pass under the laws of the State of NY. Also, your estate may be handled by the Public Administrator, rather than a trusted person you select. If so, your heirs may be required to partake in potentially lengthy and costly legal proceedings to prove their relationships before they can inherit. The Court will also appoint a “Guardian” for “unknown” persons. This Guardian, along with the Public Administrator, will get a fee from your estate! If your heirs can not prove their relationship to the Court, your estate will be paid to the State of NY.
Having a Will can ensure those you select inherit from you, reduce expenses, and expedite handling of your estate. It also allows you to nominate an Executor, who is the person who collects your assets and delivers them to your beneficiaries. If you have the right Executor, your estate should move swiftly. Lastly, if you already have a Will and haven’t reviewed it in over two years, now’s the time to do so to ensure your current wishes are carried out.