INDIANAPOLIS — If making a will makes you a bit squeamish, you are not alone.
A little less than half of U.S. adults have the document.
Victoria Howard, a lawyer at Church, Church, Hittle and Antrim, said there is no wrong time in life to put a will together.
"It can be really simple or it can be on the more complex end, depending on what their needs are," Howard said.
A will is a legal document that provides the court with directions after you die.
It can include how your assets are distributed, who raises your kids and setting up a power of attorney.
That is because if you do not make the decisions, the state could make them for you.
"It can have some unintended consequences because that can be, you know, costly, can cause turmoil and disruption amongst the family," Howard said.
And disruption is something to think about.
"People when we're planning that will jokingly say, 'Well, I'm not going to be here,' and that's true, but your family is going to be here," Howard said. " They're going to have a lot on their plate at that point."
If you already have a will, make sure it is still good to go.
"Different states have different laws when it comes to probate and estate planning. And so a will that was validly executed in another state might not be valid in Indiana," Howard said.
For example, in Indiana, a will needs to be signed in the presence of at least two witnesses.
While hiring a lawyer to write a will can cost hundreds, even thousands of dollars, you might qualify for more affordable services like Indiana Legal Services.
Lawyer Dennis Frick said the group is a statewide, not-for-profit organization that provides legal assistance to low-income persons.
"The staff will be happy to take their information, and then, we will review and determine if we can assist them," Frick said.
Also, triple-check the beneficiaries on your 401k and other accounts.
The names that are attached to those accounts will override what is written in your will.