Talking about setting up a will in these grim times of a national health catastrophe, might sound opportunistic, however, the only one to gain by having this insight is your family.
What is a Will? It’s simply a document that lists out what you want to do with the assets in your name in the event of your passing.
As the current pandemic rages through India, it’s clear that no matter your age or medical background, there is no certainty of the outcome if you do get infected. If the infection becomes fatal for the primary earning member of the family, within a fortnight those who are left behind will see their world’s turned upside down. Having a Will in place can at least ease out the financial transition in such difficult times so that the emotional and functional transition can be made without stress.
If you are still unsure about getting that Will in place, here are some reasons that may convince you.
1. Securing your children’s future
This is an important consideration if you were building an estate to leave behind for your children and it’s of paramount importance in case of your untimely death.
Making a Will can let your spouse or the guardian of minor children know what your assets are, how they can be accessed and save them the additional hardship that could otherwise come with losing an earning parent.
A Will can also mention how the guardian can use the funds available, till a certain age of adulthood has been attained by the children. It’s not just the value of assets but the use of assets too which can get covered in the will. A Will with the details of assets, how they can be used to the benefit of minor children or how they can be distributed to adult children and who is responsible for such an undertaking, is a simple document that you can write in pen or type, print.
2. Protecting assets
If you have multiple assets, creating an account of what is where and their value is not enough. Step two is to have a Will which dictates what happens to your assets in the event of your demise. If you don’t have any dependents, you may want your assets to go to those who are not family or a charity and they will not get any claim unless you have a legal Will.
If all members of your family are independent, even then it’s important to define who gets what; or else there can be disagreements that are easily avoidable through a Will. Lastly, if you have dependents who can benefit from the value or worth of your assets immediately, then a Will provides the process and guardianship for this smooth transition.
3. Protecting your business
Where your income source is a business rather than professional income, a Will can safeguard the personal stake in the business. In the absence of a Will, other stakeholders can potentially usurp your stake, leaving your family stranded.
If you create a Will and clearly articulate what happens to your assets in the business, it will create a secure future for those in your family who are dependent on the business income.
A will is clearly an important document, but unlike popular belief, it is not complicated. You can write down the relevant provisions of your Will, put your signature, entrust it to someone trustworthy and keep it in a safe place. It is optional to legally notify a Will, but it is recommended for a smooth transition.