One of the primary components of your estate plan in California is your will. This formal legal document addresses your final wishes regarding your monetary assets and personal belongings.
There are a number of strategies you may use when organizing your will and articulating your content. However, your familiarity with some critical topics can help you make sure you do not miss anything important along the way.
Even though you are the person writing your will, you may need the assistance of other people to make your plan functional. According to U.S. News, you will need to choose an executor. This individual will oversee the execution of your plan, following the instructions you laid out. Likewise, you will need to ask two people to sign your will as witnesses.
You should also include beneficiary designations so your family has a clear picture of who gets what. You may consider discussing the methodology behind your decisions prior to your death so your family hears from you why you made the decisions you did.
As you articulate the content of your will and testament, think carefully about your description of the distribution of your assets. Using concise language, be as straightforward as possible to provide clarity and reassurance of your intentions. Included with your will, you can also write a letter if there are other topics you wish to discuss that were not covered in your will. For example, you may wish to talk about your legacy and your desires for your family and their well-being.
To preserve the function of your will, you will need to update it from time to time. Notable life events may impact your prior decisions and require that you make changes to keep things the way you want them. You may consider storing your will in a safe place such as a safety deposit box at your local bank.