While it is a good idea for all adults to have a will, there are certain times in people’s life when having a will becomes essential. If a person in Florida dies without a will, they are considered intestate, and not only will their assets be divided based upon state laws, if a person has children, the state will also determine who will raise them.

Therefore, it’s a good idea for people to update or create a will when they have children. This allows someone to ensure that their children will be taken care of by the person they have selected, and it enables people to assign their assets to this person as well, if they so choose.

It’s also important to note that wills and associated estate planning documents don’t just deal with how assets are distributed upon someone’s death. Powers of attorney can be created to determine who will make medical choices for a person if they are not able to do so themselves. When people get married or divorced, it may be a good time to ensure that a selected person has access to medical records and the ability to choose what type of medical care a person will receive.

While will planning is an important part of an estate plan, people are not done with their estate plan just because they have written a will. Estate planning is an ongoing process, and modifications are likely to be required as people’s lives change. Divorces, deaths and births may alter someone’s wishes for how their assets should be distributed, so estate planning documents may need to be modified multiple times in a person’s life. A lawyer could help an individual ensure that their will and trusts are kept up to date.