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Thoughts about my will

January 16th, 2008 at 06:23 am

One of my goals this quarter is to have a will in place. My wife and I haven’t really discussed the particulars, but I thought I would present it to my wife and she can tweak it as necessary.

First, and easiest, surviving spouse gets everything. What’s mine is hers and what’s hers is hers.

Now the tough part, if we both die. I thought the best place to start was what we wanted and didn’t want.

1) I don’t want my and my wife’s death to be a financial burden on anyone
2) I don’t want my children to be a financial burden on anyone
3) I don’t want to have higher education costs be a burden on my children
4) I would like to have funds available to help by children buy a house but not squander any remaining money

I know for a “we” thing I sure use a lot of “I”. Again, this is just my framework. The boss … er wife … will need to sign off on this.

So, I was thinking that the estate would settle up all the debt and sell all “stuff” (house, cars, sofa, etc.) and transfer all of our financial accounts into a trust. The trust then would dole out a certain amount every month to the guardians of my children. I have a figure of $2k - $3k a month, adjusted for inflation yearly. I have to see if this figure is realistic.

Also, I will also need to put in something about money for special circumstances (medical comes to mind), where one child might need access to the money.

Anything that is left over will be used to pay for college. Probably room, board, and tuition. I’ll have to figure out a fair way to allocate this. I don’t want one child using all the money and none being left for the other child. Maybe when the first child enters college, the money is split into 2 sub-trust, one for each child.

Lastly, if anything is left over, split evenly between the children at age 25 or 30. I want them to have some maturity about money before the money gets to them. Of course, there may be nothing left by this point.

One exception would be if my wife has special jewelry that she wants to give to her family, heirlooms come to mind.