Many people in Massachusetts need more than a will. This basic document is meant to ensure that the property of a deceased person goes where intended. Whether you need to take other steps would depend on your family and financial situations.
Many people start planning their estates early. This provides a number of advantages. One advantage is having enough time to complete a thorough plan. Another is minimizing tax burdens. Finally, estate planning could minimize the complexity of probate for your heirs.
What are the major reasons you should have more than a will and now is that you will probably need more than a will later. Various types of estate planning tools, such as trusts or even life insurance, have potentially higher value if you implement then earlier.
Some tax benefits for estate planning happen almost immediately. For example, you may be able to give gifts to your heirs if you have funds you do not need for your retirement. Some of these could be tax-free, up to a certain amount every year. Depending on your situation, trusts could also provide a form of tax relief, as these entities could earn money under different tax identification numbers than the person who placed the money in the account.
Perhaps the most compelling reason to engage and estate planning other than a simple will is to minimize stress for the people you care about. As illustrated on Mass.gov, the probate process has many rules regarding wills. A complete plan should be able to transfer many assets smoothly, leaving them open to only minimal risk of dispute.
If all you need is a will, then it still would not hurt to get specific advice based on your situation. This article is only intended as general information.