Catchy title, isn’t it? To Will or Not to Will. I would love to take credit for it, but it all goes to the Texas Young Lawyers Association and the State Bar of Texas.
When you do as a resident of Texas, if you don’t have a will, the state of Texas has one for you. It’s possible that the state’s will matches perfectly with your wishes, but that’s not the case in most situations. Texas is a Community Property state, so it becomes especially unlikely when you’ve remarried and there are children from a previous marriage.
In any case, estate planning is an important part of financial planning. This can be as simple as making sure your will, beneficiary designations, and other documents are in order, or much more complex depending on your situation. It can make a huge difference to your heirs in the amount of hassle they have to go through after your death, taxes paid, and preservation of family relationships.
The State Bar Association does a great pamphlet on what happens in Texas if you don’t have a will. It’s called To Will or Not to Will. You should check it out.