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T Jeff Stein Probate Attorney What is a will and do I need one? | T Jeff Stein Probate Attorney

What is a will and do I need one?

       I will be writing a series of posts on various topics related to my practice and estate planning, the first of which is “What is a will and do I need one?” 

     Wills are the cornerstone of any estate plan.  A will is a document that directs the distribution of assets upon a person’s death.  Anyone eighteen years or older and of sound mind may make a will.  Alabama law requires that a will be in writing, signed by the testator (the person making the will) and witnessed by two individuals.   A will names a person to implement the testator’s wishes and sets forth the powers that person may exercise in fulfilling the testator’s wishes.  No matter the size of your estate, a will gives your loved ones guidance in the distribution of your assets, protects your estate from unnecessary taxation and prevents family disputes.  If a person dies without a will in the state of Alabama, his property is disbursed according to the laws of intestate succession.  It is never too early to establish an estate plan and provide you and your family with certainty and peace of mind.  A wonderful resource for individuals living in West Alabama is the University of Alabama School of Law Elder Law Clinic which provides free legal advice and representation to people age 60 and older.

Disclaimer:  This post is for informational purposes only and not intended as legal advice.  Please contact our office for an estate planning consultation to speak with a qualified attorney. 

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