Dying Without a Will in New York

Tuesday, August 16th, 2016, 12:08 am

In our last blog, we began listing the myths that abounds in the world of estate planning and estate planning law. These misconceptions deter countless people from engaging in an informational conversation with an estate planning attorney, and can cause emotional and financial turmoil down the road when it comes to medical issues and particular financial situations.

We discussed how some have the idea that estate planning is only for the elderly and/or the wealthy, but we cleared that misconception up: the truth is, most people can benefit from developing the appropriate estate planning documents regardless of wealth level or age.

Our Brooklyn estate planning law office works with clients to draft and solidify estate planning documents so the wishes of the client are carried out in the way they prefer upon their passing. Contact Michael F. Kanzer & Associates, PC for a free consultation with one of our experienced estate planning attorneys today.

MYTH: Dying without a will enables the state to retrieve your assets.

That is not the case. IN New York, the assets of those who die without a will, will be bestowed to the deceased’s closest relatives under New York state “intestate succession” laws. If someone dies without any family, then perhaps property would “escheat” into the state’s coffers, but the law is designed in such a way that someone even remotely close to you would inherit your assets before the state.

A will also allows you to decide on your children’s guardian, if that need should arise. So if you don’t have a will and are a parent, it’s smart to contact a Brooklyn Estate Planning Attorney to begin drafting one up for the sake of your family’s well-being in the event that something happens to you, or your spouse if you are married.

MYTH: You don’t need an estate planning attorney.

This one is not as simple as it seems. While there are some estate planning documents that you can draft yourself, most people’s lives are a little more complicated and therefore require some customization and advanced attention to detail that a non-lawyer can’t provide. It’s important to have an experienced attorney review your estate planning documents to ensure there aren’t any legal complications that could lead to issues further down the line.

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