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Should Maryland residents list personal items in a will?

When considering end-of-life decisions, many Maryland residents may think about to whom they would like to bequeath certain assets. However, they may also be unsure as to whether they need to list every personal item in a will in order to ensure that those items are distributed to the desired individuals. Luckily, there are options for addressing such concerns.

Many individuals may wish to refrain from listening every single personal item from fishing rods to silverware in their wills. The main reason for this is that if an individual decides to sell a listed item or it becomes known that the item is not wanted by the intended recipient, the individual must then revise the will in order to address the changes. As a result, the situation may become unnecessarily complicated. 

If individuals would like to have each of their personal items addressed, they may wish to create a Tangible Personal Property List instead. This list can address personal items and name the intended recipients without being directly listed in the will. As a result, this list could be altered more easily. However, the list should be mentioned in the will in order to ensure that it is binding. 

The creation of a will is an important aspect of estate planning, but many individuals may consider this document the all-encompassing part of an estate plan when that is not the case. There are a variety of documents that could help Maryland residents ensure that their specific wishes are known. Discussing desires and concerns with experienced attorneys could help interested parties create the plans best suited to their needs.

Source:, "Will should not include distributions for personal items", Joseph Karp, Dec. 29, 2016

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