Facing Reality: A Last Will and Testament

Posted by on Aug 21, 2021 in Legal News |


The Delta variant is upon us. This evolved form of Covid-19 is nearly twice as transmissible as the original virus, and it has several genetic features that make it more severe and resistant to treatment. The Delta variant has the potential to wreak havoc for months.  This article won’t be a plea for you to get the vaccine, as, chances are, you have already made up your mind about whether you will or won’t get the Covid-19 shot. 

This “variant of concern,” as the CDC calls it, comprises 83% of new cases in the U.S. With this deadlier version of the virus looming, it’s time to think about the harsh reality of the situation. You should ask yourself whether your last will and testament is up to date—assuming you have one. If you’re new to the estate planning game, then read this article, as it will serve as a guide for why you should create a will (or update your current one, if you have it).

What is a Last Will and Testament?

We all have “assets.” Our money, house, the possessions in our house, car, and more constitute assets for the purpose of a last will and testament. A last will and testament is, effectively, a legal document that tells everyone what you want to do with your stuff after you die. You can outline what you want to do with your assets, who you want to give your assets to, and what you want to happen your dependents, financial investments, and bank accounts after you pass on. 

There are a few requirements for a valid last will and testament in Florida. First, your will has to be written. Second, your will has to be witnessed and notarized according to the law. Third, it is necessary to follow Florida law’s formalities to the letter when executing a will. Lastly, to go into effect, your will has to be proven valid and permitted by Probate Court (usually not a problem, as long as the law was followed correctly).

Pros and Cons of a Last Will and Testament

As with anything, there are advantages and disadvantages to making a last will and testament. 

The “pros” of a last will and testament include:

  • You avoid the Florida laws of intestacy.
  • You have a legal document that reflects your wishes for your assets. 
  • You may be able to minimize federal and state estate taxes, should your estate be subject to them.
  • You can keep assets within your family. 
  • You might be able to protect against creditors. 
  • You can name your guardians for your kids in your will

There are some “cons” to a last will and testament. These are: 

  • You cannot plan for incapacity. 
  • The will must be filed in Probate Court. 
  • The will does not take effect until you die.
  • Your affairs might become part of public record, if your inventory is filed with the Probate Court. 
  • There are sometimes will contests and claims against the estate based on the will’s language.

Do I Need a Last Will and Testament?

After reading the pros and cons, you might be wondering if you need a last will and testament. There is a lot to think about, and there are alternatives to a will, including a trust and other legal instruments. 

You likely do need a will. Without one, you’ll die intestate, which means that a court will take charge of distributing your assets. They’ll pay off creditors, and it’s possible your kids won’t get anything, if there aren’t any assets left over after your debt is paid. However, you shouldn’t feel as though a will is your only option. There are plenty of ways to ensure your affairs are properly arranged after death, and these alternatives, especially trusts, have become increasingly popular over time. 

If you want to update your will, create a will, or find alternatives to a will, the next step you should take is contacting the attorneys at WFP. It’s not advisable to create your own will, as there are a lot of minor legal technicalities that you could miss, if you’re not trained. Getting it done professionally could save you and your family a lot of hassle down the road. Visit our website to learn more. 

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Back to School Again

Posted by on Aug 16, 2021 in Legal News |

back to school





Well, it’s that time of year again, when you get to send your kids back to school. Hopefully, there won’t be any more lockdowns, and kids will be able to get an education as normal, even though they’ll likely be wearing masks. It’s been quite a ride these past eighteen months, and most parents are excited that they’ll get a break. 

With the back-to-school season approaching, are your affairs in order? Parents with minor children face a specific set of considerations when they’re estate planning. In this article, we’ll discuss some must-have documents for those estate planning with kids.

No Wealth Required

If you’re a young couple with kids, you’re usually nearer to the beginning of your career than the end. Young couples don’t usually have an estate large enough that they’re concerned about the estate tax. However, just because your estate plan won’t revolve around tax minimization, that doesn’t mean you can neglect to create one. 

An estate plan usually refers to an advanced medical directive, power of attorney, and will. However, parents with kids must think about what will happen to their children if they both die. Though it is unlikely, and there’s no reason to feel doom and gloom when devising your estate plan, it’s important to have one in case the worst possible situation happens.


Children under eighteen are required to have a legal guardian. If their parents are alive, one or both parents are the kids’ legal guardian(s). However, if neither parent is in the picture, guardianship becomes a little trickier. In your estate plan, you can lay out documentation that designates your kids’ guardian in the event that you and your spouse pass away. 

Naming a guardian in your will is the best evidence of which individual the parents want to make decisions for their kids. Parents should take into account the guardian’s beliefs, lifestyle, financial situation, and proximity to the kids’ current place of residence. Both parents should name the same guardian in the will to avoid confusion. Guardianship is a major responsibility, and you should talk to your proposed guardian to ensure they’re on board with caring for your children in the event of your death.

Transfer of Assets

If there is no estate plan and both parents die, the child inherits their share of the parents’ estate, though said estate is held in a minor account. The child can access the money by requesting distribution from the guardian, who in turn must then contact the court for permission to remove the assets from the account. 

However, if parents do have an estate plan, they can make things easier for their kid(s). They can create a trust to hold the assets, naming a trustee to manage the trust and distribute assets to the child as they want. A trust in an estate plan is a far better asset-distributor than what your kids will get if you die intestate. An estate planning attorney will help you devise a trust or something similar, making sure your child is taken care of, even if you’re gone.

Administration of the Estate

If both parents die, a successor executor will oversee the administration of the estate. Usually, a surviving spouse is the executor of the will, but, if there is no surviving spouse, someone who is over eighteen must take that spot. This person will be responsible for handling, liquidating, selling, and/or distributing the assets under the terms of the will. Each spouse can name their own executor and co-executors when creating an estate plan. Naming an executor is just another detail that will ensure your kids’ assets are kept safe and distributed fairly. 

Contact the attorneys at WFP to learn more about the specific considerations that parents face when arranging their affairs. 

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Cryptocurrency 101

Posted by on Aug 9, 2021 in Legal News |


If you’ve been watching the news at all, you’ve probably run into the term “cryptocurrency” a few times. Cryptocurrency is far from a fad, though that’s what economists believed it would be back in 2009 when Bitcoin was first invented. Over the past twelve years, cryptocurrency has taken off, and, while it’s far from being as ubiquitous as cards and cash, it’s not going anywhere. 

In this guide, we’ll take you through the ins and outs of crypto. Cryptocurrency is a new asset class that estate planning attorneys are seeing in their clients’ portfolios. For more information, watch my YouTube channel, where I discuss different topics relating to cryptocurrency and estate planning.  

What is Cryptocurrency? 

At its heart, cryptocurrency is a type of payment. You can use this online payment to purchase goods and services. Cryptocurrency exists on a blockchain, which is a decentralized technology that stores ledgers of individual coin ownership. Blockchain is spread across many different computers that record and manage transactions. When you pay for something using cryptocurrency, your ledger reflects that. When you amass more crypto, your ledger reflects that too. Unlike a central bank’s digital currency, cryptocurrency has no central issuing authority.

What are the Different Types of Cryptocurrency?

Though you’ve no doubt heard of Bitcoin, there are more than 10,000 different, publicly-traded cryptocurrencies. More cryptocurrencies continue to proliferate through ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings, which fund the new coins’ development). As of July 23, 2021, the total value of all crypto was $1.3 trillion. Common coins include Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, Stellar, Cardano, Chainlink, USD Coin, and Uniswap. 

The Pros and Cons of Cryptocurrency 

If you’re intrigued so far, you probably want to weigh the pros and cons of crypto. Everything has its advantages and disadvantages, and cryptocurrency is no exception. Some “pros” of cryptocurrency include: the potential for high returns, immediate settlement for international and domestic transactions, payment fraud protection because of the nature of the blockchain, portfolio diversification, and greater liquidity. 

On the flip side, there are “cons” of cryptocurrency, such as the potential for large losses because the coins’ value is so volatile. Also, crypto has been used in black market activity, as it is unregulated, unbacked, and there aren’t really refunds when you conduct transactions because the price of the coins is so unstable. Also, though you’re largely protected from payment fraud, there’s always the offhand chance of cyber-hacking. 

Is Cryptocurrency Safe? 

After reading the cons, you might be wondering if cryptocurrency is safe. According to TIME, the blockchain tech behind crypto is “inherently secure” because the ledger is decentralized and public. Every transaction undergoes its own encryption process. Even though there is a risk of cyber-hacking, as stated above, that risk is low. The blockchain is constantly reviewed by bitcoin users, and that makes it hard to hack. 

At the same time, is blockchain a secure investment? When compared to blue-chip stocks, the answer is a flat-out no. Cryptocurrency is uncertain, and Consumer Reports describes crypto as one of investing’s riskier choices. Digital currency might be a hot commodity, but the prices are volatile. Bitcoin might be worth a ton of money one day and then plummet the next.

How Do I Invest? 

If you want to go forward and invest in cryptocurrency, the first thing you’ll want to do is find an exchange. You’ll need to choose a platform, such as Bitcoin.com, Changelly PRO, Coinbase Exchange, or ZT to get started buying cryptocurrency. The exchange will likely require you to verify your identity, go through a registration process, and deposit non-crypto money into your account.

After you’ve gotten that process set up, you’ll want to pick a coin. Most coins have a symbol. For example, Ethereum is “ETH,” Bitcoin is “BTC,” and Dogecoin is “DOGE.” Once you’ve picked your coin, you can begin buying and selling. 

Hopefully, this guide has given you somewhat of a start on cryptocurrency and estate planning. It’s a complicated field, and there’s no denying that crypto is volatile. However, it can be lucrative. Call the attorneys at WFP to find out if investing in cryptocurrency is the best choice for your wallet. 

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