When you don’t consider what will happen to your family if you die unexpectedly or become incapacitated, you will cause your family unnecessary financial and emotional hardship because you have not made your intentions clear.
In such circumstances you pass control to the Judicial System, whereby Courts will be forced to decide who will care for your children and how to divide your estate. For example, in California Probate Court, when a person dies and the decedent did not have a will or an estate plan, the following (potentially unintended) scenarios can occur:
- The spouse gets 100% of the estate if the couple had no children
- The spouse and if only child each get 50%
- The spouse will share with more than one child (Spouse 1/3 and 2+ kids 2/3)
- The decedents parents get 100% if the decedent had no children or spouse
- Another relative gets the estate
- The State takes the decedent’s estate if there are no “takers”, i.e. relatives.
The Patton Law Firm offers complementary estate planning & probate attorney professional services for our business clients.
Ms. Patton’s services are best covered by her very informative overview of “Why Everyone Should Have an Estate Plan.”