WHY DO I NEED A LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT? #1
A last will and testament is a legal document that has proved to be a must-have instrument for everyone that is of age and has testamentary capacity. It has however notoriously become a document that most people avoid to make or put off to the far future; the general perception is that it forces one to confront his or her own mortality, which often times is scary. It is important to note that even though mortality is a scary fact of life, the trick is not to focus on mortality but on the bigger picture: the fate of those you leave behind and the legacy you carve out for yourself and loved ones.
The importance of a will cannot be over-emphasized. There are several reasons why you need a Will, here are a few of them:
· It Contains Your Express Wishes: a will contains express directions on how you want your properties or assets to be shared or applied to (for liquidated assets). The only way to ensure that what you want is exactly what happens is to have a legally binding will outlining your exact wishes.
· Appoint a legal Guardian for your children/ dependents: most times people forget the importance of appointing a Guardian over children who are minors or for one’s elderly parents or relative. A will gives you that avenue to select those you trust, legally empower them to look after and make decisions on behalf of your loved ones.
· Appoint an Executor: with a Will, you can appoint a friend you trust or a professional to act as executor over your assets as opposed to a court-appointed administrator or a random relative who may have no regard for your wishes.
· Having a will excludes rules of intestacy and some rules of inheritance under your native law and custom which does not mirror your wishes. For instance, where a wife is not allowed to inherit from her husband and vice versa.
· Protects your family financially: there are various cases where one passes without a will and his relatives had the surviving spouse and children removed from the deceased’s properties with no care as to how they were to survive. A will ensures your finances go to the right recipient and that your family is safe and secure when you are not around.