A will is an extremely important legal document that assures you that your assets will be distributed after your death according to your wishes. In your will, you specifically name a person to be your Personal Representative (Executor) whose duty is to make certain that the terms of your Will are carried out exactly as you specify. Common terms of a will include, but are not limited to:
- Paying or not paying for funeral expenses
- Naming a guardian for your minor children
- Naming a custodian or trustee for your children’s assets
- Leaving some or all of your property to your spouse
- Leaving the property for your children in Trust
- Leaving some or all of your property to charity
- Allotting certain property to designated people
- Excluding a person from receiving any of your assets
Maryland law rules for a valid will
In Maryland, in order for a will to be valid, it must be attested to, verifying you are indeed the person who wrote the will, and signed in front of two witnesses. If you prepared a will in another state before moving to Maryland and your will complied with the laws of the state where the will was prepared, it will be valid in Maryland. If you have a will complying with Maryland law and move to another state, your Will will be valid thereto.
Consequences of not having a valid will
If you die without a valid will, the state will name a personal representative who will be in charge of distributing your assets according to Maryland law. There is a hierarchy that will be followed and your assets will be divided depending on the biological relationships of you and your heirs. If you have children, both your children and your spouse will have to share in the distribution of the assets. Thus, you cannot leave your entire estate to your spouse as most people do.
Legal assistance for will preparation
Attorney Timothy Mummert, a Maryland wills attorney will help you with the intricacies of preparing a valid will. He will provide counsel to you on how to best effectuate your goals. Knowing that your assets will be divided according to your wishes and not the wishes of the state will provide you peace of mind. At the Mummert Law Firm, we pride ourselves in putting our clients first. Call us today to protect your assets after you pass.