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Why wills form the foundation of all estate planning

For many in New Jersey, the need to address estate planning matters is easily ignored or downplayed. Some feel that they simply do not have enough assets to bother with the process, others avoid the matter because they are uncomfortable acknowledging their own mortality. However, addressing the need for wills and other forms of estate planning is important, and should become a topic of discussion within every New Jersey family.

Among all estate planning options, wills form the cornerstone of one's estate. Drafting a will allows an individual the right to dictate who will administer their estate when they are gone, and how one's personal property is to be distributed among loved ones. In short, it clarifies one's wishes, which is a gift to those who are left behind to mourn their passing and handle the details of moving forward.

For parents, making a will has an even greater level of importance. Parents can specify whom they would select to raise their children in the event that they die before the kids reach the age of maturity. By doing so, they are creating a stable future that will likely never be needed, but would become essential in making a difficult transition in the event that a child lost one or both parents.

When considering a will, it is important to focus on the parties who stand to benefit. Aside from any asset or property inherited through a will, the true gift is the clear direction that a written directive gives to those who are grieving their loss. Perhaps New Jersey residents should consider their estate planning needs in terms of addressing their responsibilities to those they love, and not as an onerous chore to be avoided.

Source: Fox Business, "The Basics of Estate Planning," Constance Fontaine, June 19, 2013

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Lanza & Lanza LLP
5 Main Street
Flemington, NJ 08822

Phone: 908-905-0183
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