Most people know that it is important to put an estate plan in place, but many of these folks procrastinate. They feel as though it is something that they can address later on, but unfortunately, in far too many cases, they never get around to it.
If you were to die without any estate planning documents, the result would be the condition of intestacy. Under these circumstances, the probate court would supervise the administration of the intestate estate. A personal representative would be appointed to handle the business of the estate during the probate process.
The above arrangement can sound like it’s not the end of the world, but it is certainly less than ideal. Who knows whether the personal representative who is appointed by the court would be the person who YOU would have chosen yourself?
Plus, the administrator may have a difficult time identifying and inventorying the assets that comprise the estate, because the tasks would be thrust upon the representative suddenly.
This is a time-consuming process, and inheritances are not distributed while the estate is being probated by the court. There are also expenses that accumulate during probate. Additionally, the red ink reduces the value of the estate before it is transferred to the heirs.
Those are some major negatives, but there is something even more significant that you should fully understand. After final debts are paid and everything is in order, the court would order the personal representative to distribute the assets under the intestate succession laws.
It is very possible that people who you love may be disinherited or shortchanged if this situation unfolds.
For example, let’s say that you are married and you have two children. We will assume that you would like your spouse to inherit everything and ultimately decide what to leave to the children. Under the intestate succession rules, your wishes would not come to fruition…
Your spouse would inherit half of the intestate property, and your children would inherit the rest.
Here is another potential scenario that would not sit well with many people. You are single and you have one twin brother, and the two of you have been close forever. Your mother passed away years ago, and your father is still alive. He is wealthy, and you never got along with him very well.
You would want your brother to inherit your intestate property, but under the laws of the state of Kansas, your father would be the sole inheritor. These are a couple of the intestate distribution situations that many people would not be happy with, but there are a number of others.
Take Action to Avoid Intestacy!
There is no reason to take any chances with your legacy when legal assistance is just a phone call away. The avoidance of intestacy can be reason enough, but there are various different ways to plan your estate. The optimal course of action will depend upon your unique personal circumstances.
We would be glad to help you put a custom crafted estate plan in place. An attorney from our firm can put you at ease, gain an understanding of your family situation and your objectives, and make the appropriate recommendations.
If you decide to move forward, we can create the ideal estate plan for you and your family, and you can go forward with total peace of mind. As time goes on, if an adjustment is necessary, we will be well-positioned to make the appropriate changes.
You can set the wheels in motion right now if you call us at 913-262-2000. There is also a contact form on this website you can use if you would like to send us a message. If you reach out electronically, you can expect to receive a prompt response.