2 Things That Don’t Go In A Last Will
Till now we’ve shown you how to make a last will here and here, told you the key ingredients that go into it and cleared many doubts you might have had about last wills. But here’s another important aspect we realized we hadn’t shared—what are the things that don’t go in a last will? And where do they go if not there? Here are 2 such things. We’ll keep you updated with more as and when time permits.
Nopp, it doesn’t go in your last will. Although the covering of your funeral expenses is mentioned in your last will, how you wish your funeral to be carried out is not. Funeral arrangements are mentioned in a separate document. Why so? 2 reasons:
- Your funeral wishes are not a legally binding document; they are simply an expression of your desires. So, they cannot be taken to court like your last will, if not followed.
- Secondly, it’d take some time for your Executor to locate your will, take it to the probate courts and be given the authority to act as your estate trustee. By then, your funeral would have long been over. Stating your funeral arrangements in your last will would be of no use then.
Your funeral arrangements document does not have to be signed and witnessed in the same as your last will and testament. It can be updated without any legal formalities. You can make any number of copies of it as you like (don’t do this with your last will though!) so that all your family can find it easily.
A list of your assets
No, your last will does not include a complete list of your assets. Reason:
- Your last will comes into effect after you die which is in the distant future. If you mention all your assets in there (household furnishings, cars, bank account numbers, etc.), you’d have to update your last will every time this changes. Not a headache you want!
If you want a particular asset to go to a specific person, mention it individually in your last will. If you want your entire estate to go to a single person or to be shared by multiple people, simply mention it as ‘entire estate’. No list of assets is required here.
However, you can make a separate document containing this list and store it with your last will and testament, as an aide for your Executor. And again, this document does not need to be signed and witnessed like a last will and is not a formal obligation. It is simply to guide to help your Executor in properly carrying out your wishes.
So remember what goes in a last will and what doesn’t. Got any more confusion, feel free to write to us or download our free eBook below to get all your doubts cleared.