14 Ridgedale Avenue, Suite 254
Cedar Knolls, NJ 07927

Issues From Not Having a Will

Elderly couple hugging each other while looking out the window

Most adults know that having a will is important. According to a recent Gallup poll, however, slightly less than half of U.S. adults (46 percent) have one. As we gain more distance from the early days of the pandemic, now is a great time to create a will. That’s where E.A. Goodman Law, LLC can assist you.

We regularly help individuals, couples, and families throughout New Jersey prepare wills, trusts, and other essential estate planning documents. Whether you are a young family looking to protect your children, a solo boomer approaching retirement, or a senior concerned about your legacy, we will create an estate plan to meet your needs and objectives. 

When you meet with us, we will listen to your concerns and advise you about your estate planning options. We can guide you as to whether a will meets your needs or whether you can benefit from a trust-based estate plan; you will have peace of mind knowing your wishes will be carried out. Contact our Morristown office today to get started with an experienced trusts and wills attorney. 

Why Some People In New Jersey Don’t Have Will

Many people are reluctant to create a will out of fear of confronting their mortality, but having a will is more than deciding who gets what after you die. An often held misconception is that family members (e.g. spouses, children, siblings) will automatically inherit the estate. New Jersey law determines who inherits your property and the Surrogate court oversees the process. Of course, you think you can wait until tomorrow, but procrastination can upend your estate plan. 

At the end of the day, not having a will is the most common estate planning mistake, given that more than 50 percent of people do not have one. Ultimately, a properly drafted will can help to protect your assets and provide for your loved ones. Moreover, putting a will in place minimizes the risk of conflicts after you pass away and avoids unnecessary legal expenses that can deplete your estate assets. 

By working with an experienced New Jersey estate planning attorney, you can create a will that protects your interests and gives you peace of mind. You can depend on E.A. Goodman Law to help you avoid the issues of not having a will. 

Without A Will 

If you die without a will or “intestate,” your assets will be distributed according to the intestacy laws of New Jersey which prioritizes spouses, children, parents, and siblings. Importantly, a will is the only way to name guardians for your minor children. If you fail to appoint a guardian to plan for their upbringing and care, the courts will need to step in to do so and the person appointed by the court may not be the person of your choosing and may not share your child-rearing beliefs, have the same goals for your children or share your philosophy about discipline, religion, and the like. 

Without a will, your property may end up in the hands of distant, unknown relatives or your surviving family members may have disputes that lead to a costly legal battle and depletes your estate assets. Suppose you are a solo boomer and have no children or siblings. Who will inherit your property if you don’t have an estate plan? The decision is yours to make and should not be left to intestacy laws. 

If you don’t create a will, an individual with an interest in the estate, such as a spouse, adult child, or sibling, must ask the court to be appointed estate administrator. Without a will, your estate and your children are left in the hands of a judge or a court, who may make decisions that differ from your wishes. With so much at stake, it is crucial to have a comprehensive estate plan in place, starting with the making of a will. 

Why You Need a Wills and Trusts Attorney

Today, many online service providers allow you to download form documents to create a will on your own and on the cheap. But this do-it-yourself approach is another common mistake to avoid. The best way to create a legally valid that meets the requirements of New Jersey law so that it achieves your estate planning objectives is to work with an experienced New Jersey wills and trusts attorney. Your life’s work should not be left to online DIY forms.

At E.A. Goodman Law, we have in-depth knowledge of the applicable trusts and estate laws and will work closely with you to prepare a will and other foundational estate planning documents, such as:

Our attorneys will also explore whether you can benefit from establishing trusts to avoid probate, protect your assets from creditors’ claims, and minimize estate taxes. We know that estate planning can be complicated and confusing which is why we take the time to explain the process and guide you every step of the way. 

Contact Our Experienced New Jersey Wills and Trusts Attorney

Don’t wait to plan your estate. Let us start preparing your will and help you plan your financial future. We offer compassionate, efficient representation and cost-effective service. Contact us today to arrange a consultation. 

Located in Morristown, E.A. Goodman Law, LLC helps people create wills and trusts throughout New Jersey.