If you stop and take a look at your estate, you can’t help but be proud of all of your accomplishments. Your things tell a detailed story about your life with some of them coming with tales of triumph and others of defeat. Creating a Florida last will and testament, you can make plans to secure your properties and rest assured that it will be protected even after you’re gone.
You also have options to create a living will, a document used in planning out any of your wishes should you become ill and unable to decide for yourself. Both of these documents lift a little weight off of your shoulders knowing that, when that time comes, you’ll be well-prepared.
Download your fillable Florida Last Will and Testament Form in PDF format:
– Adobe PDF
Do I Have to Have a Will?
There is nothing in the law that requires that anyone has a last will and testament form. Though it is not required, you should still consider creating a last will for a few reasons. The most important is that you get to have a say in what happens with your belongings, choosing whom it goes to and how it gets distributed. You also get to choose your representative, who will go to war for you if things get hectic. This is known as your executor, acting as your right-hand man to get everything going. Your executor will be the person to start the court probate process where distributions begin and are recognized by the state.
While a will can be used for many reasons, one of the most important has to do with financial and physical property items. They include animals thanks to Florida’s pet trust. The latter is used to secure the future of any pets that are in your care, assuring that they go to the right person and will be taken care of in the event of your death.
What If I Die Without a Will?
Dying without a will is not uncommon. Some people decide not to fill out a will or just don’t have the time to do it before that day comes. In this case, the state takes over, overseeing the entire process. They take a simple approach to distributions, handing over all of the estate to the spouse and children, who can make changes later if they need it.
Things get more complicated if there is no wife and children to pass down your property to. The state then goes on a hunt for the closest surviving relative, which will inherit all of your estate. When you create a Florida last will and testament, you’re securing your things and guaranteeing that they are all secured and will go to the person of your choosing when your last days are near.
A Few Notable Exceptions
Florida Statute section 732.901 covers the exceptions to properties if they attempt to be dispersed by the testator. Anything that the testator owns solely, including properties that were acquired pre-marriage, is said to be owned only by the testator and can be distributed any way they see fit. However, any other properties shared with another person or with the spouse cannot be fully distributed.
On top of that, there is no way that testators can disinherit a spouse without first having some previous agreement. That means that the spouse and the testator mutually own all properties, so both have a say in what happens with said property.
Create A Last Will
To fill out a Florida last will, the requirements set by Florida laws (§732.501) are:
- To be of an acceptable legal age (18+)
- To be able to make decisions about your well-being on your own
- The ability to sign
- A few witnesses that will testify to your signing
- Selection of your executors and your beneficiaries along with a handwritten description of the properties you wish them to have
- A list of anything financial or material that you wish to distribute
Changing a Will
Once you have filed all of the above, you can make changes to your will by adding an amendment. If you are no longer satisfied with your will or any significant life changes, simply tear or burn your will and no longer be able to be used in court. In doing this, you can avoid a will altogether or opt to create a new one that will overwrite the previous.
Make a Will Today
You can find a free form to fill out a Florida last will and testament on our website. Now is the best time to start thinking about your future, making sure that you secure the lives of both your family and loved ones. You work hard and your death should not be the reason why your things go to waste.
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Other Last Will and Testament Forms By State
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