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May 29, 2007


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I don't have a will.

I know that I should have one and I'll probably write one once I have bought my house.

The main reason that I don't have a will is that I'm single with no dependents. If I die intestate, it'll all go to my parents and I can live with that, even though its not my preferred choice. In fact, it wouldn't surprise me if they thought that I would leave them the majority of the money even if I had a will. Perhaps I should acquaint them with the contents of the will, if/when I get it written.

I don't have a will. But I think about it. My excuse is always that I need to get my finance papers in order so I know what exactly to put down and be able to write a Will quicker when I have all the numbers in front of me. Also, I need time to do it atleast semi-right, and right now time is the only thing I dont' have. Additionally, I'm single so there isn't much to write anyway. Plus I'm looking for a new job, so well, I would have to change things anyway.

I realize those are all very lame excuses, but that's the reason behind it.

Question: Does one need to meet with a lawyer for a will to be valid? Because I don't have much for assets so I really don't have much for my family to "fight" over, it's really mostly debt. But I do know it's a good idea to name power of attorney when it comes to making financial and medical decisions if you are incapacitated. That leads me to think it's good for it to be legally drafted, so if there is a dispute then the people named have backing from a legal document rather than just a Word document with my signature.

I believe that as with most legal things you don't actually need a lawyer, but you probably want one to make sure that its done correctly. Thats certainly the position in the UK anyway.

I have drafted these, but have yet to finalize them, but I do have a simple handwritten one to fall back on. Half of all wills in California are handwritten on the deathbed which is why handwritten ones are accepted here in the first place. Decisions can be difficult and dysfunctional families don't make it any easier.

I do have a will. I have had one since I was 18. Updated when I got married, updated again when we had a child. Updated again when I was widowed.

Also a Power of Attorney for Health Care and a Health Care directive (living will).

I also made my son take care of this when he was home on leave after boot camp. The Marines use a rather generic will drafted by the Naval JAG office and since JC has a trust fund, he needed a more specific will. He had to take a copy back with him to file so that the 'short form' from boot camp was superseeded.

I think that getting these legal documents in place should be part of 'becoming an adult' along with registering for Selective Service and voter registration. I basically did just what my dad did for me and my sister - made a list, helped my son get his paperwork together and nagged him till it was done LOL.

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