We do quite a bit of estate planning for our customers. One question we often get is what is a Will and what does it do? The Florida Bar states “Through a will, you decide who gets your property instead of the law making the choice for you.
You may name the personal representative (executor) of your will as you choose, provided the one named can qualify under Florida law. A personal representative is one who manages an estate, and it may be either an individual or a bank or trust company, subject to certain limitations.
A trust may be created in your will whereby the estate or a portion of the estate will be kept intact with income distributed to or accumulated for the benefit of members of the family or others. Minors can be cared for without the expense of proceedings for guardianship of property.
Real estate and other assets may be sold without court proceedings, if your will adequately authorizes it.
You may make gifts, effective at or after your death, to charity.
You decide who bears any tax burden, rather than the law making that decision.
A guardian may be named for minor children.”