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2 Times When Your Will Does Not Matter

There are two times when your Will does not matter:

  1. When you have beneficiaries listed on specific assets, such as life insurance, IRA, 401(k), bank accounts, property, and vehicles, etc.

  2. You own an account/asset jointly with someone else.


Examples:

  • Your Will states everything goes equally to your children when you die, and your daughter is your Executor, however, you have your daughter as the only beneficiary on your life insurance. The Will does not govern this. The beneficiary listed with the insurance company will receive all of the funds.

  • You own your bank account jointly with your daughter. This account will go directly to your daughter when you pass away.

The beneficiary/joint owner does not legally HAVE to share the funds with their siblings.

In fact, if your daughter does share these assets with their siblings, it may create issues for your daughter. These issues could be tax consequences or a possible Medicaid Restricted Coverage Period if she needs long-term care within five years of giving the assets away.

Also, if your daughter is getting divorced, is filing for bankruptcy, has medical debt, or has anything else bad going on when you pass away, that inheritance can be lost to any of those bad things. Then it is completely out of your daughter's hands as to what can be done with those funds.

One final issue is that if your daughter passes away soon after she has inherited everything from you, her assets will need to go through her Probate estate, and at that point, HER Will governs, not yours.

Please contact Durnell Maier Law at 937-507-9004 to schedule a free consultation to determine the best estate plan for you.


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