Anthropology 368
Writing Assignment

The following assignment must be typed. It is due November 20, 1996. NO LATE PAPERS WILL BE ACCEPTED!


ASSIGNMENT: A will is a legal document, it should be written with the advice and suggestions of an attorney. However, the will should reflect your desires and interests in dealing with the disposition of your estate. You are to write your will based on your present wealth and desires. A will is an evolving document and as your life develops, your will should be changed to reflect that new situation. You are asked only to deal with events as they exist at this moment.

Your will must detail:

  1. primary beneficiaries--close relatives, friends or charities;
  2. contingent beneficiaries--those to receive the assets if the primary beneficiaries are not living or refuse the bequest;

    (NOTE: The persons have to be named and details supplied as to what they are getting. Even if you are going to leave out a relative from your estate, you should name that individual and state the reasons for the action.)

  3. complete funeral arrangements and disposal of your body;
  4. naming of an executor or executrix.

(modified from D. Hardt, Death: The Final Frontier, 1979, p. 180)

  1. You can arrange to give what to whom you want.
  2. It can aid in reducing the possibility of "fights," legal or otherwise, over your property among your relatives and/or friends.
  3. It may reveal aspects of your financial affairs and desires that are unknown to others.
  4. It allows you the opportunity to select a guardian for any children surviving you.
  5. It can work towards minimizing costs related to handling your estate.
  6. You can establish conditions with which your beneficiaries (relatives, friends or organizations) must comply with your wishes in order to obtain your bequests.
  7. You can declare any charities to whom you may wish to donate money, property or personal belongings.

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