3 things you cannot put in your will

On Behalf of | Jan 20, 2022 | Estate Planning |

A will is the foundation of your personal estate plan. If you die and do not have a will, state laws for distribution will determine who receives your property.

The American Bar Association states that your will lets you name who receives the assets in your estate after you die. But there are still limitations to the types of property and assets you can and cannot include in this legal document.

  1. Life insurance proceeds

When you die, any funds in a life insurance account will automatically go to your listed beneficiary. Choose carefully when you select beneficiaries for your life insurance policies to ensure these funds go to who you prefer.

  1. Property in a living trust

Any property held in a living trust does not undergo the probate process after you die. For this reason, you do not need to dictate who receives property in a living trust in your will. Doing so would be redundant.

  1. Retirement plan proceeds

If there will be money from a retirement plan you own, like an IRA, 401(k) or pension, that will go to your beneficiaries after you die, you do not need to name these recipients in your will. Like life insurance policies, your retirement plan will have you list beneficiaries when you set it up.

Knowing what should and should not go in your will can help you prevent issues with your estate after you die. Before including an asset in your will, make sure that there are no existing rules that govern naming beneficiaries or their distribution.

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