After you die, you want your assets to go to the people you choose. During the estate planning process, you can make this happen by creating a will.
According to the American Bar Association, a will is a legal document that allows you to choose how to distribute your property after your death, overriding the state’s default plan for the distribution of your assets. While making a will can help you profess your wishes for your property, there are certain things you should not include in this legal document.
Requests for your funeral
You will want to let your loved ones know about your wishes for your funeral, but you should not include these directions in your will. In many cases, an executor will not review a will until after a funeral is already over. Instead, tell your loved ones about your desires before your death.
Reasons for your choices
You may have reasons for leaving assets to certain heirs. Instead of including your reasoning in your will, consider including personal letters with your estate that get sent to your beneficiaries separately.
Accounts with beneficiaries
Adding beneficiaries in your will to assets that already include named beneficiary designations can create confusion. Some types of accounts that already include beneficiaries include life insurance policies and certain retirement accounts, such as IRAs.
Some of the information you should add to your will includes named beneficiaries for your assets, a list of your assets, the executor you want to appoint and your appointed guardian for minor children. Knowing what to include and what not to include in your will can preserve the efficacy of this document after your death.