Preserving Families

And Protecting Assets

mother and two kids walking at sunset

The importance of wills in the Black American community

Not having a will has the potential to create difficulties for family members of loved ones who died intestate. This is particularly concerning for Black Americans since recent statistics show that more than 70% of Black Americans, including those in Texas, have not engaged in any estate planning, including not having a will. The Black House Foundation — a non-profit group creating new opportunities in the film industry for the Black community — contends that, by not having a comprehensive estate plan in place, many Black Americans aren’t taking advantage of the increasing transfer of wealth.

Intestacy may cause family problems

One major issue that seems to create problems when a loved one dies is the deceased not having a will, and it seems financial status doesn’t quell those issues. Even well-known Black American celebrities, like singers Prince and Aretha Franklin and actor Chadwick Boseman, died intestate. Not only do loved ones not know who should inherit what, but it can leave loose ends when it comes to the deceased loved ones’ wishes for funeral arrangements.

The problems that come with not having an estate plan are too numerous to completely cover in detail. Currently, Black Americans have a median wealth of less than 15% when compared to white families. By 2053, it is projected that the median wealth in Black households could hit zero, according to a study by Prosperity Now and the Institute for Policy Studies.

It is better to have at least something on paper

Most Texas residents know that, for an estate plan to be complete, it should contain more than just a will. But if a will is the only document a person can manage for estate planning, it is better than nothing existing at all. In fact, it could prove beneficial for all people over the age of 18, regardless of heritage, to have some form of estate plan in place.