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Medical Power of Attorney? Financial Power of Attorney? Durable General Power of Attorney? Allowing someone else to manage our health or property is not an easy decision.
We all want to manage our own personal affairs and make our own decisions! Handling finances, property matters and medical decisions is a private matter. (Period and end of story.) We might share decision-making with a spouse or partner. What if we do not have a spouse or partner? Sharing private information and access with another person is not easy to do.
If we become ill, have specific health concerns or are entering our wisdom years (aging), then we might consider giving a family member or friend authority to help with medical or financial matters. Whenever this authority is given, it is important we understand what we are doing and are physically able to sign a document that gives power of attorney to another person. Waiting until our minds become foggy or there is a health emergency may mean it is too late to give someone legal authority to help. If a power of attorney is not signed before an emergency comes up, then it can turn into a difficult and expensive situation for family or friends to handle.
In most cases, if there is a health emergency, a hospital or doctor will follow the directions of a spouse or immediate family, but a hospital or doctor cannot follow the directions or provide information to some other person without a power of attorney. A bank or other financial institution also cannot provide account access to any person wanting to help a disabled family member or friend, if that person does not have a power of attorney. Even a spouse who is not a joint owner or signer on an account cannot access the account without legal authority.
Powers of attorney are planning tools. These assure that you have the help and solutions in place before there are emergencies.
- In most cases a power of attorney is not effective until a person becomes disabled. As long as a person can make his or her own decisions, then he or she will make those decisions; but if there is an emergency and that person is unable to act, then the agent named under a power of attorney can step in to help.
- There are also powers of attorney that are effective immediately. In some cases, a person may decide that he or she needs help right away and the power of attorney can be written so the agent under the power of attorney can step in immediately to help.
- There are typically two types of powers of attorney: a medical power of attorney (healthcare power of attorney) and a financial power of attorney. These are often referred to as durable powers of attorney. The “durable” under Arizona law means that the power of attorney has no specified end date (unless there is an end date written in the power of attorney) and it also means that the agent can continue to act despite the disability or incapacity of the person who signed the power of attorney.
- The power of attorney ends on the death of the person who made the power of attorney or on the revocation of the power of attorney by the person who made it.
If a medical power of attorney or a financial power of attorney is not signed before an emergency situation occurs, often the only alternative for family or friends is to file a court proceeding requesting that a person be appointed by the court who can have legal authority to make medical decisions or to handle finances and property for the disabled person. A disability may be temporary or permanent but without an authorized agent to act, the court process is usually the only solution to protect the health and welfare of the disabled person. The court proceeding is often burdensome, time-consuming and expensive.
A legal professional can provide more guidance or prepare these types of documents for anyone who wants to make these arrangements. If you have a personal attorney, that attorney can answer questions and prepare these documents. Cautela Corporation is a small business providing paralegal services in Arizona; it is licensed by the Arizona Supreme Court to prepare legal documents but can provide assistance only to individuals who live in Arizona. Additional information about powers of attorney can be also be found at the Arizona Legal Form Library. This legal form library is an on-line service provided by Cautela Corporation for people who want to prepare their own documents and be sure that the legal document is correct! The legal form library will take a person through an interactive on-line process at a reduced fee, with built-in guidance and references, and without meetings or appointments. The interactive process allows a person to name a family member or friend to act as an agent or to name family members to act as joint agents, insuring that all legal requirements are met.
More than once I have had a person tell me that he or she owns certain property “because the Will says so”. Some people have come to my office because they are trying to sell real property and the title company has told them that they do not own the property. They are very confused. The Will gave them the property! However, title to real property stays in the name of the deceased person unless the beneficiary has done something to transfer that property into his or her individual name. When you have a buyer waiting to purchase property, it is not a great time to find out you do not have title to the real property.
A Will does name beneficiaries who are to inherit property, but the Will does not convey title to property. Steps must be taken to administer the Will; to collect and transfer property to beneficiaries as provided by the Will. These steps can vary depending upon what type of property is being gifted and how the deceased person held title to that property.
If the deceased person owned real property or personal property (like bank accounts, brokerage accounts or automobiles) and that property is titled only in the name of the deceased person, then either a probate proceeding or an affidavit process is necessary to transfer the title to a beneficiary. The type of process that is needed depends on the value of the property. It is important to research and understand these processes or to talk to a legal professional who can help you assess the circumstances and explain your options. Then you can determine the most efficient and economical way to proceed.
Sometimes when a person signs a Will they also set up beneficiary designations on property so that the property can transfer directly to a beneficiary on the owner’s death without the need for a formal process. A few methods that can pass property without a court process include:
• Beneficiary Deeds: these deeds name a beneficiary or beneficiaries who will inherit real property when the owner dies. Upon the death of the owner the beneficiary must record an Affidavit with a death certificate which is evidence that the owner died and the beneficiary is the new owner.
• POD Accounts: these are bank accounts that name a beneficiary or beneficiaries who are to received the funds left in a bank account after the owner of the account dies. Upon the death of the owner the beneficiary only needs to present the bank with a death certificate and the bank will release the funds to the beneficiary.
• JTRS: this designation is a Joint Tenancy with Right of Survivorship. It can be seen on some real property titles and on some contracts. This property also passes to the surviving person(s) listed on the title or accounts. If it is real property, the survivor(s) must record an Affidavit with a death certificate which is evidence that one of the tenants died and the survivor(s) is/are the sole owner.
• Designated Beneficiary: this designation is common on life insurance policies and retirement accounts such as (IRA’s). Upon the death of the owner the beneficiary only needs to notify the insurance company or other institution regarding the owner’s death; that institution will verify the beneficiary designation and provide the beneficiary with paperwork to complete and return to them with a death certificate; the institution will then pay funds to the beneficiary or transfer an account into the beneficiary’s name.
More information about transferring certain types of property interests after the owner has died that do not involve a court process can be found at the AZ Legal Form Library, an interactive library provided by Cautela Corporation.
Do not just read a Will and make assumptions! Make sure you look at paperwork or deed documents on the property that is gifted under a Will, make appropriate inquiries and take the steps necessary to make sure title is transferred. Talk to a legal professional when you need to and be sure everything is done correctly.
With a persons house being one of the largest assets most people own, it is important that the house be set up as community property where both parties get one-half of the equity in the house upon any separation. There is though, situations where property is given up by spouses when a disclaimer deed is signed at the purchase of the house. Generally,this is to separate the property from the community property in the marriage.
Disclaimer Deed in Arizona
In Arizona, property is characterized as either community or separate. The characterization of that property is determined at the time it is purchased. Property acquired before marriage is that spouse’s separate property if characterized in writing. Property acquired during the marriage is presumed to be community property. Upon a divorce in Arizona, the courts are required to divide community property equitably, which for the most part means equally. In situations where there is a disclaimer deed on a property, that property is not put in to consideration when separating the common equity of the relationship. It is very important that the signing party in the state of Arizona think carefully prior to signing a Disclaimer Deed.
Reasons for a Disclaimer Deed
There are two primary reasons for a Disclaimer Deed: The first is credit worthiness for a mortgage. Many couples opt for a disclaimer deed when applying for a mortgage, and one party has a much better credit score than the other and the mortgage company offers the one party an out from being attached to the mortgage and the property. The most common reason is property inherited and or purchased prior to the marriage that the couple agrees will not be part of their joint community, these cases of community property are looked at differently state by state, but for the most part, the State of Arizona would look at a Disclaimer Deed as giving up rights to a separate property.
When wills are concerned, most couples believe that one mutual will suffice, when actually, each individual person should make sure the will they are signing represents their last wishes. So how many wills do you need?
Mirror wills and mutual wills are often confused, despite differing in the legal concepts they consist of, as well as the consequences they have for the concerned parties. The only feature they share is that, instead of one person considering the wills’ content, there are two.
Mirror wills contain identical terms and are most commonly signed by couples who have similar wishes on what happens regarding their estate distribution. Both spouses for example may leave everything to their surviving spouse or children.
Due to the similarity between each will, editing the original version will often be much quicker than drawing up a new will entirely. With that, mirror wills may largely appeal to couples looking for a faster and potentially cheaper means of consolidating their asset distribution.
The purpose of creating mirror wills may be to ensure fairness between the parties. However, if a couple are harmonious and open with each other anyway, the requirement for mirror wills seems to lessen. Also, the intention of fairness may actually result in one party simply adhering to the wishes of the other, due to the way in which mirror wills are structured. This structural condition may lead to problems in itself.
Following the writing of a will, circumstances and wishes are likely to change, especially where couples are concerned. There is no legal obligation to be notified about anyone else’s will, and nothing which obstructs a party from making changes to a will. Therefore, whether it occurs upon the death of one spouse or when both are alive, a party is able to alter their original will and simply not tell the other.
Differing from mirror wills, mutual wills are an agreement which is binding between the signing parties so the surviving partner is legally unable to make changes to the will and distribute the estate differently than originally determined.
It probably goes without saying, that the most important document when closing a sale on real property is the deed. The deed transfers ownership and is evidence that you have the legal right to the property after the transaction has closed. What truly makes this document official is the legal filing of the deed at the Recorder’s Office in the county in which the property is located. This filing is referred to as “recording” the deed. The filing of the deed is important to prove ownership. It is always important to check your deed for errors and to record the deed. It is not wise to keep an unrecorded deed lying around your home or even in a safe. Some deeds must be recorded prior to the death of the person conveying the property or the deed is not valid. Other problems with ownership can arise years after deeds were signed, if they have not been properly recorded. In Arizona the County Recorder where the property is located should have a record of such an important document.
Problems with Deeds containing errors – or being unrecorded.
The two worst problems with deeds are: (1) a deed that is not recorded; or (2) a deed that contains an error when it is recorded. Correcting a problem may be a very costly – or it may be an “easy fix” with minimal expense; everything depends on circumstances and when the problem is discovered. Be vigilant when purchasing real property! With the bulk of paperwork put in front of you when you are closing on a purchase, this can take effort and determination. It is a rare occurrence but there have been incidents where a title agent or even a county agent has failed to record a deed properly either through inadvertence or some other unexplained reason.
Failure to record a deed can be detrimental to the new homeowner’s legal status and may not be discovered until the owner attempts to sell the property or refinance the mortgage. The best way to avoid this issue is to be sure you receive the original recorded deed within a few weeks after a transaction has concluded. As the new owner the original deed belongs to you after it is recorded and the County Recorder or the title company handling the transaction should mail the original document to you. If you discover that your deed has not been recorded for any reason, you should promptly contact the title company or lender overseeing the transaction to request that the deed be recorded. If you and the seller have handled the purchase and sale between yourselves, be extra cautious! A private sale should at least have an extra pair of eyes on it to ensure that both parties are accomplishing what they intend – and those eyes should be those of a professional with experience in real estate.
If the deed contains errors, the problem can often be corrected fairly simply. However, errors are best corrected earlier than later, and how easy or difficult a correction may be will depend on the type of error and sometimes the availability of persons involved in the transfer and conveyance of the real property. Fortunately, title insurance will cover major errors and the expense of correcting those errors when a title company has handled the transaction. If you do find an error, be sure to contact the title company, the title insurer or a legal professional to assist you with a correction.
Sometimes, when called upon, you may be asked to sign a document attesting to specific information that is legal in it’s matter. This is usually called an affidavit, or sworn affidavit. Most people want to know how and when to use an affidavit, and why are they important.
How and When to Use An Affidavit
Simply put an affidavit is a written statement that is considered to be made under oath. When you sign an affidavit, you are saying that the information is true and that you personally are responsible for the information entrusted in that affidavit. Also, by signing, you are testifying and stating you are stating 100% complete truth written in the affidavit and competent to testify about information in the document. Being competent to testify generally means that you are of sound mind and you are over the age of majority in your state.
Who Needs An Affidavit
Occasionally one may need to testify to factual knowledge in a court or legal proceeding, especially in probate cases where a or some party’s are deceased or not available to the courts. If there is a need to testify to validity, ownership,taxation or even value of something (usually property) a signed affidavit provided by a surviving party will usually suffice. One other benefit to an affidavit, is that other official business with banks, IRS or insurance companies may accept an affidavit as well.
Where Do I Find the Affidavit I Need
Arizona Legal Form Library offers many of the important legal affidavits used in probate and other areas of law. It is important to know, legal affidavits may vary from state to state. If you are dealing with the Arizona Legal System and their courts, you are expected to use documents that are derived from Arizona State laws. Using generic forms may lead to more expense, time and frustration on your part.
If you reside in the State of Arizona, or if you have family that resides in Arizona, you will want to make sure that you understand how the state’s laws may affect your family. The state of Arizona has comprehensive laws that govern property, inheritance and estate procedures. A misunderstanding of those laws might mean using an incorrect process and failing to accomplish your goal or causing additional time and expense to the process. Many individuals have maneuvered their way through a pile of court documentation required to open and manage the estate of a family member – only to discover later that the estate could have been managed by a summary procedure or small estate affidavit. What is a small estate affidavit and when is it appropriate?
What Is A Small Estate
Arizona law defines small estates are as those in which the decedent owned less than $100,000 in real estate equity or less than $75,000 worth of personal property. These values are only counted for those assets subject to probate which means they are assets which are titled only in the name of the decedent and do not have beneficiary designations. For example a decedent may have an investment account worth $200,000 which has beneficiaries listed to receive the account after his or her death and that decedent may have a bank account with $50,000 that is in his or her name alone. The $200,000 investment account is not part of an estate subject to probate; only the $50,000 bank account would be subject to probate. That bank account can be collected with a small estate affidavit and without court involvement. For any estate with personal property subject to probate and valued above the $75,000 amount, probate will be required.
The small estate affidavit process may only be used in cases where probate is not required. An exception is when there has been a probate administration in the past and new property is discovered; if the probate administration has been closed for more than one year, the small estate affidavit can be used to collect the property.
It is important that Arizona residents and their family understand what is involved with a small estate and if they will need a small estate affidavit. Below are some commonly asked questions about a small estate affidavit for real property and known as an Affidavit of Succession to Real Property.
How Is Real Estate Transferred
For any estate where the decedent owned an interest in real property with an equity value over $100,000, probate will be required. A.R.S. Section 14-3971 provides that the value of the decedent’s interest in that real property shall be determined from the full cash value of the property as shown on the assessment rolls for the year in which the decedent died, except that in the case of a debt secured by a lien on real property then the equity value of the property is determined by deducting the unpaid principal balance due on the debt (the mortgage amount) as of the date of death from the total value of the real property; this provides the equity value.
In most cases, but not all, the tax assessment (full cash value) of the property is often less than the current fair market value of the real estate.
An Affidavit of Succession to Real Property cannot be executed until six months after the owner has died. This can be an important consideration in deciding whether the affidavit procedure is appropriate. There are circumstances where the property must be sold before a six month period has elapsed. In these cases, a probate is required to appoint a personal representative (executor) who is given authority to manage the estate and sell the property. An Affidavit of Succession to Real Property can be used to transfer the property to beneficiaries named under a Will or to intestate heirs.
An Affidavit of Succession to Real Property must also be filed in Court and then a certified copy of the Affidavit is recorded in the County where the property is located; the recorded Affidavit is like a deed and has the effect of conveying title to the successors. Although the Affidavit is filed in Court, it does not commence a probate administration; it simply complies with a statutory requirement.
Paying Off The Mortgage
If there is still a mortgage on real property that is being passed to a successor(s) under an Affidavit procedure, that property is conveyed subject to the mortgage. The holder of that mortgage still has right to collect the mortgage. This can create problems depending on the language in the lien document (called a Deed of Trust in most cases). A lender will not simply transfer title to a mortgage to another person; often a successor will need to qualify for the existing amount of the debt or refinance the debt. You may want to research the consequences of changing the title with the lender or seek advice from a legal professional.
Please check our online library for more information on the Small Estate Affidavit and for available forms.
There are times, occasionally, when someone needs to borrow money. We’ve discussed Promissory Notes before. Promissory Notes legalize and bind two parties when there is a loan involved. Generally speaking, notes are easy to understand documents that explain the facts about the loan itself. With that being said, an important part of a loan process is knowing the answer to this question: “When Do I Need an Installment Note”.
When Do I Need an Installment Note
To keep it simple, by definition, an installment note is a Promissory Note. An installment note calls for payment of both principal and interest in specified amounts, or specified minimum amounts, at specific time intervals. This periodic reduction of principal amortizes the loan. Interest due is kept current under the payment plan and the principal is reduced by some portion after each payment. Over the term of the payment schedule the interest paid will become less while the principal paid back becomes more.
Both the lender and the borrower agree upon the payment of the Promissory Note, the terms of the payments and the interest rate to be charged. All terms and obligations are clearly spelled out. The payment structure of a traditional note is consistent over a specified period of time. The beauty of the note is that consistency — for both the borrower and the lender. If for whatever reason, the borrower defaults on the loan, the most common terms found in a note will provide that the lender may elect to accelerate the entire amount due and demand payment in full at that time or the lender can elect to have the accrued interest added to the total principal amount owed on the note at the time of the default.
Unfortunately, loans from banks, mortgage companies and auto lenders over the years have made loans seem like a complicated process that the average layman can’t decipher. These types of lenders, however, hold security for the loan being made so if there is a default in payment, they can recover the loan amount by collecting or foreclosing on the security (such as an auto or real property). These types of loans entail much more paperwork and terms.
With an unsecured Installment Note, the loan is far less complicated and simply spelled out. If you have a loan situation where you would prefer to keep things simple and you do not require security for a loan, then the Installment Note can be a great choice. In any circumstance where a loan is made between family or friends, documenting that loan in a written form creates an understanding that can eliminate future problems. As the lender, you can construct an Installment Note in the Legal Form Library, naming the parties, where payment will be made, the interest to be charged, the period of time the loan will run, monthly date when payment will be due, and the payment amount. Visit our interactive downloadable forms for more information.
Promissory Notes that are Due on Demand
William Shakespeare gave us the famous line from Hamlet “Neither a Lender Nor Borrower Be”. If Polonius would have known more about Promissory Notes, he may have thought differently. Promissory notes create a legal obligation when there is a loan of money or someone promises to pay for a product or service at a later time or in several payments. What is lesser known are Promissory Notes that are due on demand, more commonly known as a Due on Demand Promissory Note. Simply put, it gives the holder (the owner) of the note the right to demand payment at any time, or after a specific time. The Arizona Legal Form Library would like to touch on why you might use this type of Promissory Note.
When to Use a Due on Demand Promissory Note
First and foremost, a Promissory Note is used when loaning or borrowing money. The loan can be between family or friends or it may be a loan between an individual and a bank, a store or other legal entity. A Due on Demand Promissory Note is generally made between two individuals; it gives the lender and the borrower a time frame and/or expectation of when the loan will be paid back in full. For the lender, it can be a good way to acquire more control over a loan made to family or friends. The Due on Demand Promissory Note differs from a standard Promissory Note because it is payable “on demand” and not under a payment plan. At anytime after the “due on demand date” the lender has the right to demand repayment from the borrower. The demand amount includes the accrued interest as stated in the terms of the Promissory Note.
Arizona Revised Statutes Section 44-1201(A) provides that “Interest on any loan, indebtedness or other obligation shall be at the rate of ten per cent per annum, unless a different rate is contracted for in writing, in which event any rate of interest may be agreed to. . . . ” In the past Arizona did have statutes governing usury (an unconscionable amount of interest) but in 1980 the Arizona legislature amended the general usury statute to allow any interest rate agreed to in writing; thus there was thus no longer any limit on the interest that could be charged. There are administrative regulations established by the Arizona Department of Financial Institutions which govern certain practices including lending and interest in professions such as banking and insurance but agreements between private individuals do not fall within this type of administrative oversight.
The Due on Demand Promissory Note is not a customary note but it works well under circumstances where no payment is expected until a certain date and both parties agree that no payment will be made during the period of time between the date the loan is made and the date of repayment.
Inheriting of Property After A Death
When dealing with a death of a loved one or friend, it’s inherently a difficult time in your life. One of the most important items to be prepared for is the possibility of inheriting property after a death. Most of us believe, and for good reason, that a Will or a probate will handle this for us, and sometimes it does. Usually, however, there will be steps and procedures that must be followed in order to transfer joint tenancy property into your name alone (or with other surviving tenants/owners). Both personal property or real property can have a joint tenant or a named beneficiary.
Inheriting Property in Arizona
Any joint tenancy property held together with a spouse or other individual is passed to the surviving spouse or other joint owner. There is no need for a probate to transfer the property, this is called a joint tenancy “with rights of survivorship”. This form of transfer can make things simple and uncomplicated. Many individuals own property in this form. Interestingly enough though, joint tenancy controls over a Will or Trust. Therefore, the joint holder owns all right to the property even if the Will or Trust says something different.
For most assets held in joint tenancy, the institution or agency where the joint tenancy property is held or registered must be notified of the change in ownership; such as bank accounts, stock accounts, automobile or boat titles, real property. To claim property, the survivor must submit or record documents with the appropriate institution or government agency to make it official. The institution which holds personal property held in the names of joint owners will provide forms and instructions to you so that you can place the property into your name. You will need to contact that institution after a death has occurred; it will require submission of a certified death certificate in addition to the forms which it provides to you. Real property interests held in joint tenancy is different and requires that an Affidavit be recorded to attest that an owner has passed and show who the surviving tenant or tenants are. The affidavit must contain certain criteria required by statute, including:
- A legal description of the property
- A statement that the property was held in joint tenancy
- The legal name, and date of death of deceased owner
- The name of the surviving owner(s)
- A certified copy of the death certificate
To find the proper documentation and process information for the state of Arizona go to our legal form library.
Protecting A Child’s Inheritance
Protecting your loved ones for the possibility of your eventual passing is a common practice for most families. This is especially important if you have young children. Many times this process is kept simple by purchasing life insurance. Life insurance can insure that your children are financially taken care of in your absence, but how does that work if your children are minors at the time of your passing? Protecting a child’s inheritance is paramount.
Custodians of a Child’s Inheritance
The important part of all of what we are discussing today is that distributions of cash or other valuable property cannot be made directly to minor children. As long as your children are minors they cannot receive lump sums of cash or property upon your passing. A conservator or custodian or trustee will always need to be appointed. You can nominate someone to act as a conservator or custodian or trustee in your Will or a Trust. If no such document exists, or if your Will or Trust does not name a conservator or custodian or trustee for minor children, then the appointment must be made by a Court.
Leaving a Child Property
If you name a custodian in your Will, in the state of Arizona, it is a simple process to transfer property or cash to that custodian under the Uniform Transfer to Minors Act (UTMA); the custodian will hold the cash or property until a minor reaches 21. In cases where a custodian is not designated in a Will or Trust, of if there is no Will or Trust, then a minor child who will inherit over $10,000 in cash or property assets must have a conservator appointed who will manage the cash or property. Your Will can nominate a conservator to manage property for a minor child, if you prefer that to a custodian. A conservator handles cash and property only until a minor becomes 18; then the cash and property are turned over to the young adult. A conservator is subject to court oversight and must report to the court every year regarding the status of the estate including all income received and expenditures made. A Will can also establish a trust for a minor child and appoint a Trustee to handle cash and property which will keep the management of the assets out of Court. Similarly, a Trust can nominate a conservator for minor children or it can provide for a continuing trust for minor children; this will also keep the management of the assets out of Court. A Trust can set up terms to see that cash and property is managed until a child has matured beyond 18 to an age you feel more appropriate (for example until a child is 21 or 25 or even 30); the Trust is not subject to court oversight.
Inheritance to a minor, however, will require that one of these fiduciaries (custodian, conservator or trustee) be in place before distribution can begin. It is important that your Will or Trust direct these actions and appoints someone who you want to be in such a trusted position. Your Will or Trust should be direct and concise concerning all points.
Basic Will forms which provide for the appointment of custodians for minor children can be found at the AZ Legal Form Library, an interactive library provided by Cautela Corporation where you can prepare your own Will on-line; for more complex estate planning, please feel free to contact Cautela Corporation for a consultation.
Writing a Will in Arizona
Dying without a will, well, to be truthful, can be ugly. Probate court, and feuding family members is not what most want for their families after their passing. Whether your spouse has passed on, or you just never married, or you have a partner, it really doesn’t matter – it’s always wise to write a will to make sure your belongings and assets are passed on appropriately.
If you don’t appoint someone to manage your estate, it is possible that relative may step up to manage things – or perhaps a friend – or even a creditor in some cases. If no one steps up, any financial accounts will be turned over to the State of Arizona as unclaimed property after a certain number of years has past. If and when an heir discovers property being held by the State, that heir will have to go through certain procedures to claim the property. Other property like personal or real property, may just languish or be taken advantage of by others; real property may end up on State lists for property tax sales when taxes have remained delinquent over a number of years.
If no one knows who your relatives are, it can be an added expense to your estate to try and locate those relatives, if there is any one who steps up to try and manage the estate. The Court will not try to find your heirs; some one else must request authority from the Court to take possession of the estate and to conduct an investigation to find them.
Believe it or not, more than 50 percent of people still don’t have a will. It seems obvious that most people just don’t think about it – or don’t want to think about it. They may still be young or perhaps they have never suffered an illness which often brings up our thoughts about immortality and our estate.
Certain people never reach one of those obvious points in their lives to write one. If you are unmarried in middle age, do not have children and have never had a devastating disease or brush with death, making plans for what happens to your assets if you’re not around may not feel pressing.
One day though, you may hit a certain age when you just say to yourself “Who’s going to take all this when I’m gone?” At some point the thought comes to mind.
What Do You Do?
For most middle Americans, who don’t want to set up a trust plan, and just need to pass things on to a family member or loved one, it’s a simple process, but it should be well thought out. Will this person be a good steward of what I leave them, will they sell it or worse, throw it all away? All aspects should be considered.
For a simple will in Arizona, click on our form finder to make sure you’re searching for the correct will to write for your circumstances.