No matter how simple or complicated a will may appear,
a residuary clause should be included. Many times this
clause is omitted when individuals try and execute their
own will and or make a series of specific gifts of property
or specific dollar amounts. For example, if you have more in
the will at the time of your death than the total of the specific
gifts what happens to those assets, the residuary clause
solves this problem. This could be extremely detrimental when
trying to leave assets to loved ones. 

A residuary clause also disposes of any property or possessions
that were not previously or specifically accounted for in the will.
In probate law, the term residuary estate means any portion of the
estate that remains after specific bequests or gifts have been given
and all claims, debts, or expenses have been paid. The residuary clause
states that the remains of the estate should be divided amongst the
beneficiaries listed within the will. 

This avoids the problems of a will that does not contain a residuary clause.
In such a case, the assets would be passed to heirs through intestate
succession laws and state law would control rather than your wishes.
However, this would only occur after the will has gone through the
court and probate process.  

To make sure that your will is up to date and contains the most
important clauses which will protect your assets and heirs,
please contact David M. Frees, III at 888-573-7407
or [email protected].

David M. Frees, III
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Attorney, Speaker and Author