If you own any valuable assets such as a house, a car, investments, or policies, then having a will is of utmost importance.
Most people leave this as an afterthought when getting their financial portfolio in order, but this can make or break how all the things you have worked hard for are handled. Furthermore, it could end up in the wrong hands.
What is a will
The aim of creating a legally recognized will is to make sure that your last wishes are carried out the way you want. It also prevents any feuds breaking out between your loved ones or false claims arising after you have died over assets that you may have accumulated. You can also create a last will and testament to detail how you wish your funeral to be carried out. However, it is important to make sure that your will complies with the Wills Act of 7 of 1953 for it to be legally recognised.
Not having a will leaves you with no control
We all have goals we would like to achieve and possibly something that we can pass down to people who matter to us. However, without a will in place, your assets will be handled by the state or a relative. There are cases where valuable investments and policy payouts from life insurance policies remain unclaimed due to a person not having listed a beneficiary or a will that will state the person or institution that needs to receive the payout. Having no will in place gives you no control over who ends up with your assets and how it gets divided.
It is not as complicated as most people make it out to be
Not having enough understanding of will's has led many South African’s to delay the process of getting a will or even having one at all. The myth that wills are expensive or complicated to make can prevent many South Africans from protecting valuable assets that will benefit their loved ones. You can get a will drafter online with just a few simple clicks and have it drafted for free in some cases. Keep in mind that you may have to pay a small fee to keep your will in a safe place and updated which can be as little as R57.50 based on your executor who will draft a will. An executor can be a financial institution such as an insurer, bank or lawyer.
Remember to keep your will up to date
An updated will is less expensive than one that is simply made and forgotten. The reason why it is important to review your will each year is to make sure that the right people are listed and those who are no longer alive, or you do not have a relationship with anymore are removed. Doing this will make sure that the right people end up with what you intended them to have and prevent any possible disputes from breaking out.