Jackson death prompts thoughts of living wills

Larry Crisp looks over the living will he drafted last year.
Larry Crisp looks over the living will he drafted last year.

Posted by: Melissa McKinney - bio | email

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -  Larry Crisp says his living will is all about his 14 year-old daughter Caroline.

"My sweet little angel," he says. He drafted the will last year.

"It was a weight lifted off my shoulders," adds Larry.

The provisions in the will mean Caroline is safe if anything happens to him and his wife.

It will also make sure belongings get in the right hands.

"Anything that's an asset to someone that they love...however they want that to go when they're not here, they need to have that in writing," says Larry.

It's a step he and attorneys believe is never too early to take especially if you have young children.

"That will would dictate and direct the court and give them guidance in deciding who would take custody and guardianship of your children," says Ed Parish, Jr., an attorney with the The Parish Law Firm.

Attorneys say without a will in place, the state decides who gets your belongings and possibly your children.

With one, you are in control.

"The beauty of a will is you can dictate exactly who's gonna get what and it's not necessary for it to be a family member," says Parish.

So how do you go about drafting a will?

Attorneys suggest contacting the State Bar Association for tips on selecting a lawyer.  They also suggest asking friends and shopping around to make sure you get a good price.

In the end, Larry says any price is worth making sure his family is safe.

"I know, these days every dollar counts, but you gotta put a value on that piece of mind too."

Attorneys say the average cost of a will may run you anywhere from $150 dollars to $400 dollars.

Once you create a will you can always make changes to it. It must be signed by two witnesses with a notary to be recognized by the State of Alabama.

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