If you do not have an estate plan yet, you are not alone. According to Gallup News, only 46% of adults have a will. Younger people are less likely to have one than older people. Only 20% of people age 18 to 29 years old and 36% of people 30 to 49 years old have a will, but that figure increases to 76% among people aged 64 or older.
Because death is unpredictable, it is a good idea for you to make a will when you are young. However, for many people, it is a significant life event, such as the following, that spurs people to take action.
When you get married to someone else, you start combining your assets with that person and accumulating assets together. According to U.S. News and World Report, a need for clarity about what should happen to those assets should either you or your spouse, or both, die prompts many newlyweds to write a will.
2. Birth of a child
The birth of a child is another event that may spur you on to write a will. It is an important step to take because not only do you have to address questions about your child’s inheritance, but you also have to decide who will care for your child if both parents die. A will is generally the only estate planning document that allows you to name a guardian for minor children.
3. Death of a loved one
The death of someone close to you, such as a friend or family member, can remind you of the fragility of life and motivate you to make estate planning decisions. Maybe the person who passed away did not have an adequate estate plan in place. This may have resulted in fighting among surviving family members, and you may want to avoid that for those you leave behind.
You do not need to wait for a special occasion to write a will. However, if you already have a will, events such as these can also serve as good reminders to review it for accuracy and update it as necessary.