Estate Planning In Harrisburg– Your Guide To Writing a Letter of Instruction

An estate plan includes all your wishes about your assets and property in writing and who you want to transfer these assets to. In Harrisburg, the probate process is quite intricate. When you pass away, your will’s executor ensures that everything goes according to the will. However, often, there might be things that you want to convey to your loved ones without including them in the will. 

This is where a letter of instruction comes in. It is not a legal document and contains informal instructions for your family members and loved ones. You can include personal wishes that other people do not get to read. To properly write a letter of instruction, work with a Harrisburg estate planning lawyer today. 

What is a letter of instruction?

A letter of instruction is a document that contains your instructions and preferences on various aspects of your life. It covers everything from medical care to funeral arrangements to the distribution of assets and property. Unlike a will, it is not legally binding. Instead, it serves as a way to communicate your desires and wishes to your loved ones or the executor of your will.

Because it has no legal authority, you can use any language and write any message you wish for your loved ones in a letter of instruction.

What does a letter of instruction include?

Since it is not a legally binding document, it is entirely up to you to decide what to include in the letter of instruction. However, there are some important things you must ensure are included to make the life of your executor easier. These include:

  • A list of all your assets.
  • The location of any tangible assets that are not readily accessible.
  • Necessary information about all liquid assets, including bank accounts, investment accounts, retirement funds, etc.
  • Contact information of anyone who helps you with your finances, including attorneys, brokers, and financial advisors.
  • Information about preferred charities for donations.
  • A list of all financial account beneficiaries or other estate beneficiaries and their contact information.
  • Your Social Security number.
  • Contact information of any insurance company or creditors.
  • The location of all safe deposit boxes and their keys.
  • Instructions for the care and placement of any pets.

How do you write a letter of instruction?

Despite being informal than most of the documents, you must know how to write a letter of instruction correctly. Here is an easy-to-follow step while writing a letter of instruction:

  • Start by making a list of information and items to include.
  • Start writing the letter.
  • Regularly update the letter of instruction and make additions as needed.
  • Attach a copy of the letter to your will.

Hire an estate planning attorney today to ensure your letter of instruction has unambiguous language and that your wishes are heard loud and clear!

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