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Do you need a letter of intent for your estate plan?

On Behalf of | Sep 13, 2023 | Estate Planning |

A letter of intent is a document that explains what you want regarding your assets and how they should be managed or distributed after you pass. It serves as a roadmap for your heirs and executors.

The letter of intent offers guidelines for those handling your estate. It is beneficial for some people, but is it necessary? 

The legal standing of a letter of intent

The letter of intent is not legally binding, unlike a trust. The role of this letter is supplementary. The goal is to fill in gaps your legal or formal estate documents do not cover. The letter lets you include personal wishes and sentiments you want your loved ones to follow. 

Advantages of adding a letter of intent

Adding a letter of intent to your estate plan offers several benefits. It can help prevent conflicts among your heirs since your wishes are clearly outlined. It also lets you share your values and give a personal touch to the legal process that follows your death. In some situations, the letter will help with asset management because it outlines your wishes clearly and in your own words. 

Making an informed decision

Deciding whether to include a letter of intent in your estate plan is a personal choice. It is one you need to consider carefully. Knowing the benefits can help; however, remember it is not a legally binding document.  

While a letter of intent may not be legally binding, its inclusion in your estate plan can offer benefits, making the transition smoother and more aligned with your personal wishes. It fosters clarity and understanding, serving as a guide that ensures your heirs implement your wishes.