Many people put off doing wills and creating an estate plan because they are not sure who to appoint to serve as their Executor, or the Guardians and Trustee for their minor children. Making the task more challenging is when the lawyer asks the client who they want as alternates. It's at that point when I usually get that blank stare.
Alternate fiduciaries (fancy name for Executors, Guardians and Trustees) are important to identify in your Will for several reasons. First, the person you name to serve in these roles may not be around when you die. Second, even if they are around, they may not be able to serve (perhaps a disability has made them unable to serve) or they simply decide not to serve. Just because you name someone in your Will to serve as the executor, guardian or trustee, that does not mean that person MUST serve. When you die, the people you name in your Will to serve in these roles must then ACCEPT that responsibility and begin acting.
Our office is involved in many estate administration cases where the named executors, guardians and trustees have “renounced” serving in these roles, leaving that responsibility to the alternates noted in the Will. If the Will does not provide for alternates, then it is as if you died without a Will in that respect and the courts will need to get involved to name the necessary fiduciaries. And the last thing you want is the courts to be more involved in settling your estate than is necessary.
I realize identifying people to serve in these roles can be difficult but do yourself a favor and name a few alternate executors, guardians and trustees when you do your estate plan. It is an exercise worth the effort, even if you will not be around to witness it!
You can protect your family and appoint a guardian and trustee for your minor children very easily by doing a simple will. All it takes is a phone call or text to Serra Law Group at (908) 534-1985.
Our on-line platform called Smart Law eliminates the hassle of schlepping into an attorney's office like in the old days and streamlines the intake process, so you never have to leave your home. And it can all be done in the palm of your hand on your phone at a fraction of the cost of a traditional law firm. The gap between knowing and doing has never been slimmer!
Act now and feel good you did something extremely important for the protection of your family.
Why use a form when you can have a firm!
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