When thinking of your will and estate planning, you should consider who you would like to include as a beneficiary in your estate planning; or in some cases anyone you would like to exclude from your estate planning.
Some common beneficiaries include:
- Your spouse/partner
- Children and grandchildren
- Other relatives
- Organizations, such as churches and universities
Be sure to give enough information so the intended beneficiary can be easily identified and located. For a person, this would include the name, address and birth date. Be as specific as possible to identify the person in your will.
If you are not specific and put something like, “Jane Doe of Minnesota,” this could be any number of women. Make the search for Jane Doe easier by saying: “Jane Doe of Hastings, Minnesota born on June 2, XXXX whom I went to college with.” This is much more specific and will help your attorney verify her as a beneficiary.
Also, be sure to update your will if a life changing event occurs, such as a birth of child or death of a beneficiary.
Generally, people not specifically mentioned in your will don’t receive anything, with exception to your spouse and children.
If there is someone in your family, whether it be your children on other family members, who you would prefer not to inherit from your estate for whatever reason, you can directly exclude them in your will.
If you are ready to begin your estate planning, please contact me today.