A question that many people have - especially younger people - is: when should I draft a Will? The answer to this question - like many legal questions is, it depends. There are many things to consider when deciding to draft a Will. First and foremost, you have to consider what type(s) of assets you have and what you would like to do with those assets.
In Pennsylvania, as well is in most other states, a Testator (or the person who is making the Will) has to be at least 18 years old. However, most individuals do not obtain significant assets until they are a bit older than 18. However, young people may want to consider having a Will for their digital assets like PayPal accounts, photos, music, blogs, and other aspects of one's "digital life." Your "social media presence" is important to you -and you can leave your Facebook and Twitter passwords in a Will so that your online profiles will not be spammed if something happens to you.
A beneficiary is a person named in the Testator's Will that will receive property and/or assets upon the Testator's death. Considering your assets in conjunction with intended beneficiaries is important to do prior to meeting with a Wills and Estates attorney. If you have a specific idea of who you would like to leave certain property or assets to, you may want to include this in a Will sooner than later so that this is accounted for in the event of something happening.
What if I do not have a Will?
Pennsylvania Intestacy Laws provide for the distribution of a decedent's property when that person does not have a Will. Therefore, if you are unmarried, your assets will likely go to your parent(s). Intestacy laws are a very "one-size-fits-all" way of distributing an estate, and in order to avoid this happening, drafting a Will naming specific individuals may be in your best interest.
Contact our Allegheny County Wills Attorneys today to discuss drafting a simple will to protect your assets!