There are good reasons for every adult in Washington to consider having a will or some kind of estate plan. Even if you have no dependents or assets, you may want to create powers of attorney that appoint someone to make medical and financial decisions on your behalf if you are unable to. However, if you are married or have children, it is particularly important to have an estate plan.
Guardians for your minor children can be appointed in your will. Without this, there may be a long and costly legal process to appoint someone as guardian, and it might not be someone you would have chosen. With a will, you can also specify how your assets are distributed among your children. You may even want to disinherit one or more of your children, and if this is the case, you might need to specify it in your will.
Your spouse and other family members
You also need a will if you are married whether or not you have children. This will ensure that your spouse and other family members receive the assets you intend them to have. If you die without a will or other estate planning documents that specify your wishes, such as trusts or beneficiary designations, the state determines how your assets are distributed. This can result in your spouse, your children and others getting more or less than you wanted.
An attorney may help you prepare your will and other estate planning documents. If you have a will but you made it several years or decades ago, you may want to sit down with an attorney and review it. Your family and your assets have likely changed in that time. Tax laws might also have changed, and this could mean that your will needs updates as well.