Estate Planning, Wills & Trusts, Edmonds, WA Attorney

What is a Will? Explained by Edmonds Estate Lawyer

Edmonds, WA Wills & Trusts

I get this question all the time, it’s not an easy or fun subject. What is a Will? Is it important to have a Will in my Estate Plan?

My name is Ryan Pesicka, Estate Planning Attorney with Concord Law, P.C. in Edmonds, WA. Today I’m going to explain the basics of a Will. Each situation is unique and each person has different needs. If you’re interested in setting up a comprehensive Estate Plan, don’t hesitate to give us a call 206-512-8029.

Estate Planning Attorney Edmonds, WA

Edmonds Attorney – Ryan Pesicka, Esq.

What is a Will?

A Will directs the passing of your property at death.  In Washington State, a Will requires a probate or use of a probate alternative.  The primary requirement of a Will is to achieve your intent through a legal instrument, a Will.

Why do I need a Will?

If you pass without a will, your property (or ‘estate’) will pass according to Washington statutes—this might not be what you would have actually wanted to have happen with your life’s work.  However, without an estate plan, your property will pass according to the laws on the books, not necessarily what you would have wished.  Even if “everyone knew Bob wanted his daughter to get the house and his son to inherit only the old Ford Mustang,” what people knew will not matter in the absence of a Will.

How can I execute my Will?

In order to execute a valid Will, one must have the capacity and the intent to do so.

Capacity is a legal term, but essentially means that one has the ability to communicate their true wishes.  For example, a person who has lost touch with reality to the point where they don’t remember who they or their family members are, would not have the capacity to execute their own will.

Intent is also a legal term.  A person must intend to make a will.  For example, a person who was presented a will to sign under the threat of bodily harm, or a person who was told that he was signing for a package, when in fact it was his own will, would not have executed a valid will.  Though documents were signed in both of these examples, neither situation produced and legally enforceable document because the person did not intend it a such.

There are more rules and requirements regarding creating a will for you and your loved ones.  Consult with a knowledgeable Attorney to make sure you have a will in place that is both valid and one that reflects your true intentions.

If you are looking for a consultation with a local Edmonds Attorney, please reach out to us here at Concord Law, P.C.