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Beneficiaries of Wills – What to Know
To most persons, thinking about death is an abomination. It is however impossible to ignore death as a reality of life. This is why you are advised to write a will early in life. Knowing your dependents is the first step in writing the will. Very many different people can be the dependents. Of importance is to ensure they know in advance.
The definition of a beneficiary is the person who is in line for inheritance upon death of the owner of the will. The successor to an estate or other assets is the beneficiary. Sometimes the beneficiary is a minor which means that they will wait to reach legal age to get the benefits in the will. The benefactor should tell the beneficiaries about the will early. This will eradicate confusion when you die.
After writing your will, make it a habit to revisit and review it regularly. Changes in life can necessitate altering the will. Consider having alternate beneficiaries in the will. This means that if the primary beneficiary was to die, the secondary ones will inherit your assets automatically. Ensure that your will is updated at all times.
There are several categories of beneficiaries. The first category has irrevocable beneficiaries. Seek advice of your attorney and financial advisor before naming irrevocable beneficiaries. This is because it is very difficult to change these beneficiaries once they have been included in the will. Then there are revocable beneficiaries. This one can be changed in case something happens in life. Beneficiaries can be altered due to things like marriage or divorce.
A primary beneficiary is defined as the person who is in line directly to receive your assets upon your death. This person is of interest to most insurance companies. Contingent or alternate beneficiaries form another group of beneficiaries. This is the alternative beneficiary if the primary beneficiary was to die before getting the inheritance. Apart from the primary and the alternate, there are also residuary beneficiaries. These are named to get very particular items from the benefactors. Case in point is a grandmother gifting a specific jewel to a grandchild.
Point to remember is that residuary beneficiaries can also have alternate residuary beneficiaries in place. A will can name many people. The spouse is the most preferred person by most people. However, it is important to name an alternate beneficiary after the spouse. Children would be the ideal alternate beneficiaries after the spouse is named as the primary beneficiary. Most people do however name children as primary beneficiaries.
It is also possible to have charities and friends as beneficiaries in your will. It is a personal choice. You can get more info about wills and beneficiaries online and grow your knowledge appropriately from this site. The fact that we never know when death will come to us means that writing a will early is of vital importance.