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When a person dies without a Will, then that person has died “intestate” and the laws of intestacy apply.  In Georgia, this means your spouse inherits all of your assets if you have no children, and if you do have children, then your spouse gets 1/3 of your assets and the remaining 2/3 is divided equally among your children. If you are not married, then your assets are divided equally among your children.  It gets a bit more complicated if you are not married and have no children as your assets could go to your grandchildren, your parents, your siblings, your aunts and uncles, your nieces and nephews, and your cousins, all depending who is alive at the time of your death.

A Will allows you to decide on which people or organizations you want to receive your assets at your death. You can give everything to your favorite child or favorite charity. You can give 10% to your brother, 30% to your wife and the rest to the Red Cross, the choice is yours to make.  Another choice that you can make with a Will, is the timing of the distribution of your assets. Most people do not want their 20 year old son to have a large sum of money just given to him to spend in whatever manner he wishes.  A trust can be created within your Will that allows your children to receive their inheritance at the ages you think would be best for them.

Having a Will lets you have the final word on what happens to your wealth, whether that wealth is $1,000,000 or $1,000.  You worked hard for what you have and you should be able to decide exactly how you want your assets distributed after your death and the way to accomplish this is to have a Will.