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Who Should Have a Copy of My Will?

naples wills lawyer talking with elderly couple

What Should You Do with Your Will?

Finishing your will is a huge accomplishment. However, one more step must be taken after you complete your will. You must decide where to store the document and to who you should give a copy.

Where Should You Keep the Original Will in Naples?

It is critical to keep the original will in a place that is secure yet easy to access. The best option is to store your will in a fire-resistant at home. If it is in a fire-resistant safe, it will not be misplaced and has the added benefit of not being destroyed in a fire. You must make sure that your executor knows the location of the safe and how to open it. If you do not have a safe, you should keep it in the top lefthand drawer of your desk or another place where you store important documents, like a filing cabinet. One of the biggest risks is that the document is lost or you or your heirs do not remember where it was placed.

Another option is to leave your original will with your Naples will lawyer. If you leave your will with your lawyer, you can request it back anytime. Sometimes law offices change hands, so there is a chance that it could be difficult for your executor to track down.

Some people decide to store their original will in a safety deposit. While this option is sure to keep the will safe from theft, it can make it difficult for your heirs to retrieve the document if you die unexpectedly, especially if they do not have financial power of attorney. The bank may deny access to the box if they learn of your passing.

Wherever you decide to store your original will ensure that your heirs know the location and how to access it. The original must be submitted to the probate court. A copy will not be sufficient. Your estate will be distributed according to Florida intestate law if the original is not found.

Who Should You Give a Copy of Your Will in Naples?

There are no legal requirements in Florida about who you need to give a copy of your will before you pass away. However, it is a good idea to provide a copy to all of the people mentioned or who will be affected by the will, including your executor, children, and other heirs. Some people decide to have a family meeting where they can address everyone together. You can ask your Naples wills lawyer to have this discussion in their office, so they can answer any legal questions that may arise. Other people decide to hand out the copies individually, especially if children are being treated differently (i.e., one child’s share goes into a trust, while the others receive their share outright).

There are many benefits of sharing your will with your family before you pass away.

1. It gives your family an opportunity to confirm that you truly intended what you wrote. It lowers the chance that you will be challenged after you die.

2. If you give a chance for your family to ask questions about your estate plan, it is less likely that there will be fighting and animosity between family members after you pass away. You can explain your decisions and the thought process behind them. One of the most powerful legacies you can leave is peace in your family.

3. When you open up a discussion about your will, your beneficiaries can tell you their preferences about how they want their inheritance treated. While the decision is completely yours to make, it can be helpful to know their wishes. For example, perhaps your children want the inheritance to go directly to their kids.

4. You let your executor and backup executor know what responsibilities are expected of them. It gives them the opportunity to accept the position. If they cannot serve for any reason, you still have time to pick another person.

Call A Naples Wills Lawyer

If you have questions about who to give a copy of your will, you should contact Nici Law Firm. James R. Nici is an experienced Naples attorney with over 25 years of experience. He is well versed in these issues and can create an estate plan that fits your needs. Contact our office today at (239) 449-6150 or use our web form to set up a free consultation.

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