I just had a conversation with somebody this morning who was explaining why they didn’t have a Will. I am not a hard seller of the benefits, but I love to listen to the reasoning, and this person came up with number 2 from our top 10 list “I have nothing, so why do I need a Will?”.
As we noted in our original post this could indeed be the case if you were writing your Will to come into effect today, but a Will is written to take effect sometime in the future. (Hopefully, the very distant future.) Events change, financial circumstances change. You cannot always write your Will as soon as you have accumulated what you regard as a significant estate.
There is a good chance that if I die unexpectedly, it would be as a result of an accident, and this could have arisen from the negligence of a company. My estate could then sue the company for wrongful death, and any settlement then becomes part of my estate . But it doesn’t have to be a company; O.J. Simpson was required to pay $33.5M as part of a wrongful death settlement. You may not feel that this is too relevent to your situation, but take a look at this; medical malpractice lawsuits are worth about $500k auto accidents are worth anything around a million dollars.This site lists a few examples; debris on the road $1.9M, SUV rollover $2.9M, and the proverbial hit by a bus $1.1M.
The point of all of this, is just to say – You have absolutely no idea what you are worth, even if, heaven forbid, you died this afternoon. So, postponing a Will until you think you are worth something is never a sound estate planning tactic.