Nobody likes to think about death, especially their own, and this is one of the reasons why so many people put off writing a will for as long as possible. This is not, however, an advisable attitude to take and the importance of having a will cannot be expressed enough.
When a person does pass away, it is often their wish that their estate be passed down to their loved ones; however, if a will is not drafted (as is the case in so many sudden and unexpected deaths) then this may not happen.
People are often misinformed and believe that when they die their estate will be passed to their next of kin even without a will. This is definitely not the case as the laws relating to inheritance of an estate are often complicated when there is no will in place.
Wills are important for many reasons:
- Wills Can Limit Family Disputes
- Wills Can Outline Personal Preferences/Desires
- Wills Make Quantifying and Distributing Assets Easier
- Wills Can Name a Guardian for Your Children
- Wills can Provide for Heirs with Special Needs
Individuals seeking to prevent family infighting, and who want to ensure that their spouses, children and other relatives are properly taken care of after they die would be wise to consider drafting a will. Due to the very legal nature of a will, be sure to consult an attorney prior to drafting or executing the document. An attorney will tailor a plan specific to your circumstances and it is neither a complicated nor costly exercise.
– Jason de Mink
BA LLB LLM (UCT)
Need a will? Or legal advice? Contact Jason!