5 Things A Will Doesn’t Do

  • Estate Planning
5 Things A Will Doesn't Do | Attorney Mario Godoy _ Lombard Estate and Probate Legal Group

Wills offer many benefits to help plan for the future. While a will is an important part of estate planning that provides peace of mind and certain protections for your family and heirs, there are certain things a will cannot do.

Here are 5 things a will cannot do:

1. Provide Directly For A Child With Special Needs
A special needs trust allows you to set money aside to provide for the needs of your child, and still maintain their public health benefits eligibility. Creating a Special Needs Trust allows someone with disabilities to receive the government funds they are entitled to, such as Social Security and Medicaid, but also get private funds to cover expenses that aren’t covered such as entertainment or recreation.

2. A Will Doesn’t Help Your Family Avoid Probate 
Probate is a legal court procedure that validates a will and puts your wishes into effect. Probate is expensive and time-consuming. Probate court filings are a public record. The terms of your estate will be open to public inspection, including any creditors. Proper estate planning can help you avoid probate and minimize the amount of state and federal taxes that a beneficiary will have to pay after the person dies, reduce attorney fees, and cut down the delays inherent in the court system.

3. Care For Your Pets
Caring for your pets is one of the most over-looked parts of your estate plan. Depending on your state of residence, an estate planning attorney can create a legal document to provide for the care and ownership of your pet and the money necessary to care for your pet. 

4. Plan Your Funeral 
Typically a Will is not read to the family until after the funeral occurs. Therefore, any special arrangements are often not learned until after your loved one’s burial takes place.

5. Avoid Estate Taxes
A Will cannot help you reduce federal and state estate taxes. If you leave money to a charity or non-profit organization, a Will can help you avoid gift taxes.

Comprehensive Estate Planning

A Will is an important first step in an estate plan, but a Will cannot cover every type of asset or every situation. To create a  comprehensive estate plan, contact the Estate and Probate Legal Group in Dupage County, Illinois, or call us today at 630-800-0112.