Most people who have something they want to leave behind to relatives or close friends understand that Missouri law requires them to leave a will or trust or some other legal device that clearly states their intentions. If they do not, their assets and properties go into the hands of the state for distribution. Sometimes these assets and properties eventually end up with these relatives or friends, but not always.
Often, a person's last wishes may be disregarded due to an oversight or simply because a power of attorney had not been chosen by the deceased, so no trusted loved was identified to execute these last wishes. Missouri law gives a resident the right to give power of attorney to any trusted individual who may be a relative or a legal professional.
The previous post on this blog discussed some of the basics of the will contest procedure in Missouri. Once the matter has entered probate court, it does not end. The state's probate laws require that a petitioner comply with certain rules and regulations before a final judgment is made.
According to Missouri probate laws, a will is considered binding if it is not challenged within a period of six months from either the date of probate, the date when a probate court rejects the petition or the date when the court issues the first notice of granting letters on the deceased person's estate, whichever is the latest.
A Missouri living will is an instrument by which an individual can provide instruction to temporarily withhold a medical treatment or completely stop it from carrying on any further. The legal system in Missouri allows individuals to use a declaration to authorize physicians or providers of health care to withhold or cease treatment under specific circumstances. The statement used in living wills has a specific format where the intent of the individual must be clearly explained.
It is critical for a will to be legally valid and steps must be taken to ensure that during its formation. In Missouri, like anywhere else in the US, a will is an instrument that ensures that the property of a deceased person is distributed according to his or her intention, which is explained in the instrument itself.
Saint Charles, Missouri, residents know that wills form the grounds upon which an effective estate plan is prepared. Some of the critical aspects that an individual needs to address while drafting a will were discussed in an earlier post on this blog. Once issues, such as identifying assets and executors, are settled, the next step is to choose the estate's beneficiaries, who consist of three types: primary, secondary and contingency.
There was a time when people believed that wills and trusts were only meant for those people who had immense wealth. However, as Missouri residents may know by now, that is no longer the case, as people of varying net worth are reaping the benefits of a well-crafted estate plan. The base element of an estate plan is the will. A will expresses a person's wishes in regards to their property after death, and in the absence of a will an estate is entered into probate and property is distributed according to the probate court's orders.
The death of a loved one is truly a sorrowful event, but it is also a matter of legal significance. The legal aspects can be even more complex when the deceased person was well-off and left behind considerable wealth for his or her heirs. In such cases, as residents of Saint Louis, Missouri may know, having a valid will is crucial. However, unless the will is presented to a judge for probate within a specified time, it will not be considered legally valid.
An estate plan for every St. Louis, Missouri, resident is very important in order to ensure stability while one is alive and a smooth transition after death. Unfortunately, many people do not seek adequate guidance while finalizing an estate plan and, as a result, executors sometimes face unique challenges. Rocker Lou Reed's multi-million dollar estate may be prove to be challenging for his heirs.