You’re starting to think about creating your estate plan, but it can be confusing. How do you know what is right for you? Simple will? Trust? Something else?

Let’s start with a simple will.

This is a basic estate planning document that everyone should have at minimum. They can do the following: Name a guardian for your children, direct who will take care of financial affairs for your kids, declare how you’d like your property distributed and name an executor. Even simple wills might have to go through probate, so naming an executor is essential.

How do you know if a simple will is the proper document for you? It should suffice for younger people or for those who have a smaller estate that won’t be subject to estate taxes, based on its size. If you have considerable assets, a different estate plan might be a better option.

Even if you’re younger, and your assets aren’t too considerable or complex, you still might consider an alternative to a simple will, if:

  • You want your money to continue to be managed. That includes when you want to set up a trust that gives income to your children or grandchildren, for example.
  • Your child is disabled, and you want to create a special needs trust.
  • You believe someone might challenge your will.

The best way to know if a simple will is right for you is to consult with an attorney experienced in estate planning. The attorney can draft a simple, or other, estate plan for you and ensure it conforms to Texas law.