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Question about Wills and Estate Planning
Old 07-13-2021, 02:59 PM   #1
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Question about Wills and Estate Planning

My wife and I are in our early sixties. We plan to have our will drawn up soon as soon as we agree on a lawyer, etc. My question is: do we have to leave our cash and investment in dollar amounts or can we break it up by percentages. In other words can we say my sister gets 25% of my total cash assets rather than a straight dollar amount? I may conceivably live another twenty years and how would I possibly know now how much my wife and are I going to have left in twenty years?
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Old 07-13-2021, 03:01 PM   #2
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Our wills are set up with percentages.
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Old 07-13-2021, 03:58 PM   #3
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Percentages are fine and are in every will, at least in the residuary clause (which may well be 100%).

N.B., the wills likely aren't the important thing for investments and "cash.". Rather, the transfer on death (T.O.D.) designations on each account will govern. You need to make sure they are consistent with your intent.
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Old 07-13-2021, 03:58 PM   #4
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My estate attorney offered monthly, maybe even weekly seminars to go over the basics and answer some questions. I certainly would've been comfortable asking this. I'd think any attorney could draw it up as percentages, or maybe even "first $xxx goes to so-and-so, after that y%, etc".

My will is actually drawn up to give all to my son, but most of my assets are transfer-on-death or set up with beneficiary at places like Vanguard, and they allow %s. Probably the only way they do it.
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Old 07-13-2021, 04:00 PM   #5
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My charitable bequests are worded as "$XX,000 or Y% of my estate, whichever is less" to make sure that a reasonable amount is left for DS, my only heir, so it's also possible to use a hybrid approach.
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Old 07-13-2021, 04:33 PM   #6
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Ours are a mixture, some smaller ones in dollars or specific real estate bequests, and the larger ones in percentages of the balance. Your estates and trusts expert attorney will help you figure out what is best for you and your beneficiaries.
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Old 07-13-2021, 10:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lewis Clark View Post
Our wills are set up with percentages.
as is our trust.
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Old 07-14-2021, 06:12 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by athena53 View Post
My charitable bequests are worded as "$XX,000 or Y% of my estate, whichever is less" to make sure that a reasonable amount is left for DS, my only heir, so it's also possible to use a hybrid approach.
I'd never thought of that, I really like it. At some point I need to switch from my simple will to a trust and likely will use that method.
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