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How To Prepare To Write A Will

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Preparing to write a Will starts with three basics:

  • Gathering information about your assets 
  • Making decisions about the people or entities to whom you want to leave your assets
  • Identifying the person, people and/or entity to be in charge of making what you say in your Will happens. (This is known as administering your estate.)

As you think about what to do in your Will, standard advice for everyone is to write your Will as if you will die very soon.  Assuming you will die soon for these purposes has nothing to do with your actual health condition. Wills are written for the facts as they are today.  A Will can be updated as circumstances change.

For additional information, see the following.  If you are meeting with a lawyer, having this information ready will save you time and money. If you are writing a Will yourself, it will go much more smoothly if you are prepared.

NOTE: In this article, we refer to the person who will carry out the wishes contained in your Will as a personal representative/executor. We use this method to avoid confusion in case your state refers to the person as a "personal representative" or as an "executor."

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