At a minimum, everyone over the age of 18 years old should have a will. With a will, you can plan for the distribution of your property after death, appoint a personal representative, and make other important decisions. Although every will is different, most wills contain several common provisions. In this article, we examine three common Florida will provisions.
What is a Last Will and Testament?
A last will and testament, commonly called a will, is a legal document that expresses the desires of the person making the will, also called the testator, with regard to the distribution of his or her property. In addition, a testator can use a will to appoint a personal representative to administer his or her estate after death and name a guardian to care for his or her minor children.
Common Florida Will Provisions
Three common provisions in Florida wills include:
Residuary clause: A residuary clause is a common Florida will provision that determines who will receive the residue of a person’s estate. The residue is the amount of an estate that remains for one’s beneficiaries after all expenses of the estate have been paid. An estate’s residue also includes any property or assets that aren’t specifically mentioned elsewhere in a person’s will.
Attestation clause: A will in Florida is not enforceable unless it meets all statutory requirements regarding execution. Specifically, a will in Florida must contain the testator’s signature. In addition, the signing of the will by the testator must take place in the presence of two witnesses. An attestation clause establishes that the required witnesses were present when the testator signed the will.
Personal representative appointment: Finally, another common Florida will provision is the appointment of a personal representative, also known as an executor. An estate’s personal representative is the person who is tasked with handling the probate estate and ensuring that the terms of the will are followed. An estate’s personal representative is a fiduciary, which means that he or she must always act in the best interest of the estate’s beneficiaries. Therefore, before choosing a personal representative, it is imperative to ensure that such a person is trustworthy, honest, and dependable.
Contact an Experienced Florida Estate Planning Lawyer
If you are ready to create a will in Florida, you need an experienced estate planning attorney on your side. At the Law Offices of Angela Siegel, our experienced lawyer will help you create a will that adheres to the requirements of Florida law. In addition, Ms. Siegel can assist you in creating a complete estate plan that will ensure your wishes regarding your property, health care, and other matters are honored. With years of estate planning experience, Angela Siegel will ensure that your estate plan addresses the unique needs of you and your family. Please contact us today to start the Florida estate planning process.