Will Lawyers in Pleasanton, CA Helping Individuals Prepare for the Future
It can be difficult to imagine what will happen to your family and your possessions after you die, but taking simple steps to prepare, such as creating a will, can secure a better future for your loved ones. Attorney Debra DeCarli has many years of experience helping individuals prepare wills and with other estate planning needs. She and her skilled legal team can help any individual and family, especially those with unique needs such as blended families and nontraditional families. The DeCarli Law firm has offices in Northern California, including a convenient location in Pleasanton. You may also schedule a virtual appointment or by telephone. Contact us today to see how we can help with your will at (925) 568-2350.
What Is a Will?
A will is a document that, in California, specifies how your assets will be distributed and to whom after you pass away. This is an important aspect of estate planning and falls under strict regulations in California in order for the will to be valid. The will can also include instructions on how your minor children will be cared for and who will become their guardians if both parents were to die.
One type of will that many people are familiar with is called a living will. In this document, you indicate how you wish for your healthcare to be administered, which is also known as a healthcare directive or advance directive. Many of our clients choose to include living wills in their estate plans.
Once you have created a will, it can be changed or revoked by you at any time. However, please keep in mind that changing your will must be done under the same strict guidelines that were in place when the will was created for it to be considered valid.
What Happens if You Die Without a Will?
Dying without a will, or intestate is a situation we try to help our clients avoid as much as possible. In California, the estate of an intestate individual must go through the probate process where the court decides who will benefit from the deceased person’s assets. This procedure can be complicated and costly, and it may leave people who were close to the individual, such as close friends or unmarried partners, with nothing. For people who have no living relatives, the property would go entirely into the custody of the state of California.
It can be intimidating to think of all the decisions that must be made to create your will. But you should keep in mind that wills don’t have to be final. Many life situations, such as marriage, divorce, the birth of a child, or the death of a beneficiary, require changing a will, and this can be done with relative ease. The important thing to know is that the changes in the will must be made within the guidelines of California law. It is not a matter of simply crossing out a line and writing in something new.
If you need a will or would like to make changes to your current will, you need an attorney who can help make the process as quick and easy as possible while ensuring everything is done properly. Reach out to the wills attorneys at DeCarli Law today for a free consultation to see how we can help you.
How Does A Will Take Care of Your Family and Loved Ones?
Creating a will is one of the best ways you can plan ahead to secure the best possible future for your family. Some of the ways a will can help are:
One of the main reasons people think of when they think of wills is that they name the people that will receive their property after they die. Beneficiaries can also be organizations, trusts, friends, or unmarried domestic partners.
This is one reason having a will is so important; without it, friends and unmarried partners will likely not receive an inheritance through the probate process.
Specifies a Guardian for Minor Children
If you have minor children, you will need to choose someone who can become their guardian if both you and your spouse should pass away. The will is where this person is named so that they can take legal custody of the children if both parents die. It is also possible to name one person as the physical guardian while another person manages the financial assets of the child.
Indicates a Person to Administer Your Estate
You will also need to choose a person or organization to take charge of executing your estate plan. This person (or institution) is known as the executor and will be who distributes your property to the beneficiaries in the way you have chosen. They will also make sure all of your debts and taxes are paid after your death.
While many people choose a trusted family member such as a spouse or close relative, others decide to select an institution as their executor, such as a bank.
Should You Hire a Wills Attorney for Help Creating a Will?
With all of the decisions that go into creating a will, it is understandable that the process seems overwhelming for many people. However, saving your family from the headache and expense of probate can be one of the most charitable choices you make. And creating a will doesn’t have to be scary. With the right wills lawyers on your team, the process can be simple and quick. Our estate planning attorneys know how to get the results you need while listening compassionately to your opinions and wishes. Contact us right away if you need a new will or if you would like to make adjustments to your current will. You can reach us at (925) 568-2350 to make an in-person, virtual, or phone appointment.