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What’s at risk if you die without an estate plan in Indiana?

Procrastination is human nature. People put off handling tasks that they think of as unpleasant. Unfortunately, procrastination harms the person delaying certain activities.

They run the risk of not doing what is necessary in a timely manner, which could have significant consequences. They will also endure higher levels of personal stress because they have this looming obligation that they have not fulfilled.

For that reason alone, creating an estate plan once you have people who depend on you or significant personal assets makes sense. The peace of mind you have alone may be worth the effort that goes into making a comprehensive estate plan. You also benefit by protecting yourself and the people you love from you dying without a will. What is at risk if someone passes away without an estate in Indiana? 

State law decides what happens if you don’t plan

Indiana has specific laws dictating what happens to a person’s property when they die. Those laws apply to everyone who dies as a resident of Indiana unless they create an enforceable estate plan before they die.

In Indiana, the closest family members of someone who dies without a will are those who will receive their property. Someone married with no children can expect all of their property to pass to their spouse. Children and grandchildren can inherit from someone’s estate if they die without leaving their wishes in writing.

If someone doesn’t have children or a spouse, then their parents or other immediate family members will inherit their assets. If there are no legal or biological surviving family members, then the assets left behind when someone dies might eventually become the property of the state of Indiana.

You risk giving up control of your ultimate legacy

If you don’t create your own estate plan or will, then you don’t get to decide your own legacy. Additionally, people who depend on you, such as a romantic partner that you have no plans to marry, could be left in a very vulnerable position.

The longer you put off creating an estate plan, the more time you will have to worry about what might happen if you died unexpectedly. Thinking about your family and your lasting legacy can help you create an estate plan that fulfills your last wishes.