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The Financial Impact of Not Having a Will in California

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The Financial Impact of Not Having a Will in California

Estate planning is an important legal process that everyone should set up during their life. Now, your possessions will get distributed regardless of whether you have a will when you pass. However, this is not the preferred situation for a number of reasons. If you live in California, read on to discover the financial impact of not having a will when you pass.

The Probate Process in California

When a person dies, their estate enters probate—a legal process to distribute assets. If a will is involved, it will direct the probate process. If not, the courts will defer to standard practices.

In and of itself, probate is a costly process. From the emotional and time strain to California’s probate fees, the distribution of assets costs a pretty penny. However, not having a will to guide the process can make it more costly.

The Costs of Probate Without a Will

The absence of a will means the court decides asset distribution according to state laws, which might not align with your wishes. This procedure can incur legal fees, court fees, and executor costs, which collectively eat into your estate’s value.

Moreover, the financial impact of not having a will in California includes the potential loss of specific bequests to loved ones, leaving them with less than you intended.

This monetary loss can also put an emotional strain on family members. Additionally, the drawn-out and complicated probate process can delay asset distribution, creating financial instability for those dependent on your estate.

Be Smart; Have a Will

Overall, these burdens are easy to avoid with proper estate planning. Keep in mind, though, that estate planning involves more than just writing a will. That’s one of the most common myths about estate planning. A will is an important piece of estate planning, but it is not the whole picture.

Work with a lawyer to establish a complete plan for your assets after passing.

Not having a will won’t stop your assets from going to your family upon your death, but it will make the processing more financially and emotionally taxing. Now that you understand the broader financial implications, you can take proactive steps to secure your estate and ensure your wishes are honored. Don’t leave your legacy to chance—draft a will to protect your assets and your loved ones.

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Meet Jannese

Jannese Torres is a award-winning Latina Money Expert, Educator, Speaker, Writer and Business Coach. She became an accidental entrepreneur after a job loss led her to create a successful Latin food blog, Delish D’Lites. Now, she helps her clients and listeners build successful online businesses that allow them to pursue financial independence and freedom.

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