Wills Attorney in Orange County
Need to Draft a Will? Let Us Help!
Wills are a fundamental tool in ensuring that your wishes are followed
after your death. At P. Arnsen Blakely our Orange County estate planning
attorney is fully aware that wills represent much more than legal documents,
and he goes above and beyond in his efforts to assist clients in drafting
wills, living wills, trusts and other
estate planning tools.
While many people may be familiar with the basic concepts of wills and
testaments, the fact remains that there are numerous legal complexities
and procedures that must be met in the creation of a legally valid will.
Ensuring that your loved ones are provided for after your death and that
the handling of your estate proceeds smoothly should be a priority. This
is why our firm works diligently to provide the comprehensive legal assistance
you and your family needs. Our services include assistance with a
last will & testament,
living wills, and the probate court process. Start with a
free, initial consultation.
What Are the Common Components of a Will?
The purpose of a drafted last will and testament can greatly vary from
individual to individual, and there is no set-in-stone outline for creating
one that you
must follow. You may have publically traded stocks that need to be sold or maintained.
You could have a set of family heirlooms that require certain care and
precautions. You may even need to decide who will inherit your debt. Regardless
of what you need to say or how you want to say it, there are some portions
of a will that usually should be included, no matter the situation.
Some of the most common components to a will include:
Assigning guardianship: If you have any children or dependents – or even pets – you
should use your will to assign who you would like to have guardianship
of them. Keep in mind that the person of your choosing might not be the
guardian chosen in the end, as their eligibility could vary based on extended
Dividing assets: When people think wills, they will ultimately start to envision a distribution
of wealth. If you do not draft a will and pass away, your estate and properties
may be divided by a state-appointed official in ways you had never intended.
Debt management: If you have debt when you pass away, it does not disappear and needs to
be managed. Based on your will, you can use portions of your estate to
pay off your remaining debts. In such cases, inheritors will only be able
to make claims on your estate after debts have been settled.
Name an executor: An executor is someone who ensures your will is carried out as closely
to your wishes as it can be. In the will itself, you should name one of
your most trusted friends or family members as the executor.
No contest clause: You may wish to include a clause of no contest in your will. Doing so
typically prevents anyone who contests your will from gaining any benefits
of your estate. While somewhat controversial and able to be disputed itself,
a no contest clause may save your heirs from going to
probate court due to disagreements.
What Is a Holographic Will?
In the state of California, a testator may create a will at any time and
without any witnesses present. Known as a holographic will, these documents
are just as legally binding as other forms of wills. However, due to California
Probate Code §§6110-6111, it can't be digitally created
or typed on a typewriter. A holographic will needs to be in the testator's
own handwriting and include their unique signature somewhere on the document.
Furthermore, due to the seemingly rushed or unprofessional nature of a
holographic will, they are often more easily contested in court.
If you need to make some last minute revisions to your will and live in
a state that recognizes handwritten wills, a holographic will could be
your solution. It is still recommended that you seek professional legal
counsel from an estate planning attorney if you need to change your will.
How Our Orange County Estate Planning Lawyer Can Help
When a client comes to us, we take the time to learn about their unique
circumstances to recommend options and answer all
questions about wills. In whatever legal action we undertake, you can be sure that our efforts
are concentrated on meeting your needs and objectives. We also make every
effort to avoid ambiguity and cover all relevant subjects. We prepare
living wills, also known as Advance Health Care Directives, to spell out
the client's wishes in case of a health situation where the client
is unable to communicate. We can also draft
trusts, including irrevocable trusts, revocable living trusts or special needs
trusts as needed to fulfill client needs and supplement the will.
It is important to prepare a will properly in order to avoid conflict and
anticipate future situations. Our experienced estate planning lawyer in Orange County is here to help.
Contact P. Arnsen Blakely today.