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The Importance of Having a Will. Objectives Why is a will important Understanding the terms: –Beneficiary –Probate –Executor –Guardianship Pros and Cons.

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Presentation on theme: "The Importance of Having a Will. Objectives Why is a will important Understanding the terms: –Beneficiary –Probate –Executor –Guardianship Pros and Cons."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Importance of Having a Will

2 Objectives Why is a will important Understanding the terms: –Beneficiary –Probate –Executor –Guardianship Pros and Cons of Various Options Cost of wills and estate planning Resources

3 Why is a Will Important Who will get your assets when you die? (does NOT supercede beneficiary forms!) If you do not have a will (intestate) who will decide how your assets are distributed, and will it be to your liking? What happens when an estate goes through “probate” Tax implications  Inheritance  Estate

4 Beneficiary The Beneficiary is the person(s) or legal entity that receives assets as part of an estate settlement. A Beneficiary Form instructs the financial institution who will receive your assets or benefits in the case of your death Assets controlled by Beneficiary forms include: insurance, 401k/IRA’s, annuities. Make sure you update all forms:  Change in marital status  Birth of children  Death of beneficiaries

5 Probate Probate is the legal process of transferring property (real and personal) from the name of the decedent to the beneficiaries. Court supervised Must settle all debts and claims before distributing property Probate required if decedent passes Testate (with Will) or Intestate (without will)

6 Executor Executor is the party recognized by the Probate Court to supervise the settlement of the estate Must collect and inventory decedents properties or assets, including determining fair market values Resolve any issues with creditors and pay administrative expenses Prepare and file tax returns

7 Guardianship Families with minor children will appoint caretakers for those children in the event the parents die prematurely In the absence of these instructions, the Court will appoint a guardian

8 Pros Cons Basic Will  Simple low-cost Trusts  Can be customized  In some cases, provide protection from collections Basic Will  May not be sufficient if you have children Trusts  May be expensive  Can limit your options in the future Pros & Cons of Various Options

9 Cost of a Will Costs will vary depending of where you live and complexity of your financial and family situation.  Basic Will - $20 (do it yourself) - $100  Health Care Proxy - $0 (may be included in cost of other documents a lawyer would do as part of full estate planning)  Power of Attorney – can be free to many hours of work by an attorney which can be $200-$500/hour  Complex Estate Planning - $200-500 per hour

10 Resources

11 11 06/29/2007 2:30pmeSlide - P4065 - WorkLife4You WorkLife4You Resources Finance Web Service –Retirement Library –Retirement Planning Basics Library –Wills & Estate Planning Library Legal Web Service –Retirement Library –Wills, Estates & Trusts Library Audio Tips and Podcasts Retirement & Estate Planning Interactive Calculators Retirement Spending, Investment Analysis, Investment Yield, Roth IRA Comparison, Roth IRA Deposit, Savings Amount, Savings Rate, Spending Rate, Traditional IRA, Withdrawal Amount, Withdrawal Term OnDemand Webinars Retirement & Estate Planning, Basics of Investment, WorkLife4You Guides Couples in Retirement Series, Choosing a Financial Professional, Finding a Lawyer That Is Right for You, Wills, Estate Taxes, What’s Your Estate, Testamentary Tax Savers, Who’s In a Will, A Matter of Trust, Defined Benefit Plans, Financial Independence, IRAs: What They Are, Making Critical Choices, Making the Move, Salary Reduction Plans, Tax-Deferred Retirement Plans Related Web Sites WorkLife4You web site

12 12 Let WorkLife4You Make Your Life a Little Easier! Contact WorkLife4You 24/7: 1-877-WL4-NOAA (1-877-954-6622) (TTY 800-873-1322) Look for the “Already a member?” box — Not a member yet? Follow the “Register” link and enter Registration Code: NOAA


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