Top 5 Will Writing Pitfalls

Older couple will planning with their accountantEstate planning can be an intense process for some, for others it might seem like just another hassle. As the top earning generation ages into retirement, it’s becoming essential for people to know what goes into writing a will. If you, your spouse or a loved one needs help with creating a legal and fiscally sound plans– consult Liu & Associates’ guide below! The following five tips are the most common oversights made when planning an estate.

  1. Good intentions are one thing, but leaving major sums of money to a charity or non-profit organization in your will may not always be the best route. Tax benefits are limited and other methods of giving tend to be more beneficial. A charitable giving fund set up in your name means more money going towards the causes you support.
  2. Don’t take chances, ensure your will is kept up to date! Assuming that life changes and other conditions are accounted for can leave your loved ones unprotected. Divorces, new children, and plans for business assets– these all can have serious consequences if left unaddressed in an obsolete will.
  3. Wills cover most aspects of your estate planning, but not all. Insurance policies, pensions and registered accounts often have their own beneficiaries, separate from your will. These designations should be reviewed and updated every two to three years to ensure proper dispensation.
  4. If you share joint accounts with loved ones, you may want to add clauses to your will to ensure the remaining amounts return to the estate. If these amounts are overlooked, the other holder or holders of the account may be immediately entitled to the funds. This can cause disagreements resulting in litigation, which rarely leaves a family unscathed.
  5. An heirloom cottage has a nice ring to it, but keeping your vacation home in the family could cost your loved ones more than you expect. Taxes and maintenance costs can be startling to younger relatives, possibly putting them in financial risk. Agreements can be signed beforehand to ensure the property passes on to someone who is prepared for the responsibility.

The above list is only a summary of what can go wrong if you take shortcuts when planning an estate. For a full review and consultation of your needs, contact or visit Liu & Associates today. Our experienced staff will ensure your loved ones, properties, assets and businesses are protected for decades to come.