Should I add my family members name on my assets and avoid a will?
I do not recommend adding family members to your assets without seeking the assistance of an attorney. For example, if you add one of your children to a bank account, and they are a joint owner then their creditors can come after that whole bank account because that bank account is considered owned by your child. If you want to add them as a beneficiary to avoid a will, that is a much more effective way of transferring that asset to them at your passing, but then they don’t have control of it during your lifetime. Therefore it is still your asset. The other situation that you might want to be mindful of is when you transfer an asset or add a persons name to your asset, you are actually gifting it and there are consequences for that both at the federal tax level as well as from Medicaid or long-term care planning that you probably did not intend when you added your family member to your asset.