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Klenk Law

What is a Will?

Posted on Thu Jul 17, 2014, on Estate Planning

From our “Ask a Question” Mailbag: What is a Will?

Recently updated June 30, 2018.

What is a will?

Please Explain What is a Will?

A Will is a legal document which:

  • Specifies the beneficiaries who are to inherit your assets either outright or in trust.
  • Names a representative (an executor or personal representative) to administer the estate, pay your debts and any taxes and then to be responsible for distributing your assets to the beneficiary or to a trustee.
  • Nominates a guardian for your minor children.

While most assets held in your name alone pass through your will, there are exceptions:

  • Revocable Living Trusts: If you have formed a Revocable Living Trust during your lifetime, the assets you transferred to the trust pass according to the trust’s terms, no matter what your Will states.
  • Beneficiary Designations: if you have named a beneficiary for a bank account, life insurance policy or IRA, that beneficiary receives the account no matter what you may have said in your Will.
  • Joint Ownership: Some assets can be held in more than one name. In some cases, these assets are held “jointly with a right of survivorship.” These assets pass to the surviving joint owner, no matter what the Will states.

More Planning Questions?

The Will is only a piece of the Estate Planning process. By all means, if you want to learn more, please read my more detailed article, Estate Planning Everything You Need to Know.

In Conclusion: The Will Explained

I hope that this article was helpful in explaining a will. Further, I included links to even more detailed information on my website so you can learn more. Therefore, please contact me and let me know how I did. Certainly, your comments and questions are welcome!

Let our Estate Planning lawyers help walk you through what can be a confusing process. To begin with, call to speak to one of our experienced estate planning lawyers.  By all means, our lawyers are ready to answer your questions. In fact, feel free to contact our office for a free consultation. Ultimately our goal is to make the process as painless as possible!

Wills, Trusts, Probate, and Estate Litigation, It’s All We Do!

Wills, Trusts and Estates, It’s All We Do!

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Camden County, Estate Plan, Estate Planning, Estate Planning Attorney, New Jersey, Wills

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I contacted Peter through his website using the free consultation link for a question regarding a will. While I was expecting only a few minutes, it was a lengthy conversation. He made sure he understood the situation by asking many questions before offering advice. He then went through my options and results of each one. He left it up to me to decide if I wanted to proceed and did not push me toward one or another. His website has very useful information which I definitely researched before I called him. While I decided not to proceed at this time, I feel I had enough information to make that decision. I would not hesitate to hire him should I need to in the future.

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Peter and his staff handled all of our needs in a very professional and timely matter.

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Peter is a model attorney who puts his clients first at all costs. His extensive expertise in estate planning and tax planning was a great comfort as we began, and have expanded, our family. He is very thoughtful, generous, and quick witted. His approach towards his business has been an inspiration to his peer group, and his zest for life is extremely infectious. Without reservation, I highly recommend Peter as trusted and cherished counsel

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Peter Klenk ESQ is a thoughtful and capable attorney who we work with on estate planning issues. His firm recently provided us with new Wills, Power of Attorneys and our instructions regarding major health issues. These documents are important for estate and life planning. Peter and his team are masters in the complexities of Estate Law. We highly recommend Peter and his Associates to provide thoughtful advice and outstanding work on these complex issues of the law. Make sure your estate planning documents are up to date, and Peter can be relied on to do an excellent job. Well done Peter!

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