When you are planning your estate, and you’re ready to draft a will, it may be a good idea to consult an estate and bequest lawyer in Memphis, TN for advice and direction. It is prudent that the laws and rules of estate planning are strictly adhered to otherwise, a judge might rule your estate as being invalid. For your heirs, this could be disastrous and lead to an immaculate amount of lost time and money. Yes, you can use online tools or standard drafts to create an estate plan; however, they are very general. If your estate is anything more than simple, or is worth a significant amount of money, it is recommended to consult a probate lawyer Memphis, TN has to offer.
What is a Bequest?
In legal terms, bequest refers to the act of giving an item through the use of a will. More specifically, as a bequest lawyer in Memphis, TN might explain to you, bequest refers to transferring any personal property; where as, when you transfer real property, it is called a device. Finally, if you bequeath property, you essentially transfer it through your will. So, for example, you can bequest your wedding ring, devise your family home, and bequeath your assets to your loved ones.
Depending on the laws of the state in which you draft your estate plan, as well as, federal laws, will depend on how a bequest is governed. Furthermore, as a Memphis, TN bequest lawyer might tell you, all bequests must be included in a valid will. If this is not applicable, they may not be enforced. In general, a large part of the probate process will include whether the bequests included in the will are actually valid.
Common Types of Bequests
Bequests can be a transfer of any personal property. Thus, as long as it is not affixed to actually land, it is considered to be a bequest. Examples include clothing, jewelry, artwork, books, money, furniture, and so forth.
Following your death, or the death of a loved one, the will must go through the probate process. At this time, the court will review the document and interpret what has been stated within the will. Usually, the court will classify bequests into two categories:
Conditional Bequests – When a specific event has occurred, these conditional bequests may be transferred. For example, if you wish your family home to be transferred to your daughter only after she has children, it would be a conditional bequest. Or, your car collection will go to your son if he graduates college. In this case, your son would receive the collection after he graduates.
Executory Bequests – These tend to only be granted when a specific event occurs in the future. An example of an executory bequest might be read like “My daughter will only receive my home when she has children”. If she never has children, she won’t get the home. Or, “My son will receive my car collection as long as he graduates college.” If he does not graduate, he will not get the car collection.
You might notice that there is a very finite difference between these two bequests which is why it is important to consider a bequest lawyer in Memphis, TN to draft your will, or handle the probate process on behalf of heirs who have recently lost a loved one.
Wording Makes a Difference
In estate law, every word matters. Whether you need help writing a will or interpreting another person’s will, please call a Memphis, TN bequest lawyer from Patterson Bray.