Experienced Wills Law Firm Serving New Orleans
When most people think about drafting a will, they are concerned about distributing their surviving assets to their heirs after their death. Wills are important instruments for transferring ownership of property and bestowing wealth, but they are also useful for carrying out legal responsibilities and even controlling end-of-life issues.
Louisiana law determines how assets are distributed when there is no will in place. A will, however, gives you the opportunity to draw up your own rules about what to do with your property after your death. A well-written and legally valid will can ensure your last wishes are carried out.
Why Wills Are Important
Having a will ensures your estate is distributed according to your wishes after your death. A will can be used to accomplish any of these:
- Protect your children’s assets from misuse by their surviving parent.
- Delay or eliminate federal estate taxes for your surviving spouse.
- Prevent creditors from accessing assets of your children or grandchildren.
- Leave specific assets to charities, grandchildren or even unrelated parties.
- Make charitable donations.
- Name a successor if your spouse or children pre-decease you.
- Stipulate the right of your surviving spouse to sell non-consumable property without the consent of your children.
- Appoint more than one executor to police each other.
- Name a guardian for your minor child if no parent survives.
- Put your children’s inheritance in trust to protect it from mismanagement.
- Provide for your surviving spouse while obeying Louisiana’s forced heirship law.
Having a will ensures that your surviving spouse and heirs are taken care of according to your wishes. You can also use a will to fulfill other obligations and desires after your death.
Louisiana Law of Forced Heirship
Your children are defined as forced heirs for the purposes of Louisiana law, and under that law, you are required to leave a portion of your estate to your children. The forced heirship law applies to any of your children who are 23 years old or younger at the time of your death.
You are legally obligated to leave one-quarter of your estate to your forced heir if there is only one at the time of your death. If you die leaving two forced heirs, they must inherit half of your estate to be split evenly between them.
Louisiana is the only state in the country with a forced heirship law, which is one of many reasons why you should have your will drafted by an experienced Louisiana wills law firm like Irpino, Avin & Hawkins. Complete our online contact form or call 1-800-7500-LAW today to schedule a free consultation.