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Unique estate plan names actors as beneficiaries

Some people may be quite surprised when they hear how one man chose to divide up his estate. The man was single and reportedly had no family or children. According to the man's attorney, "He was a loner, and a lot of neighbors didn't know who he was." So, when a person does not have any living family to will his estate and assets to, who does he choose?

This man selected two actors as the beneficiaries of his estate. Though the man never met the actors, he reportedly told his attorney that the men were his "friends." According to a news report, this man liked the actors' television shows, which primarily aired in the 1970s and 1980s.

After the man's death last summer, each actor received a letter informing him that he would receive half of the man's estate. The man owned 160 acres of land in Illinois worth approximately $1 million. In addition, he also had several hundred thousand dollars in cash and CDs. The man only made one other request in his will; he donated $5,000 to a humane society.

While this man's choice to give his estate to two people he had never met may be unusual, it demonstrates a person's ability to create a unique estate plan. When drafting a will, a person might feel pressured to create a fairly standard will.

However, each person can create as unique of a will and estate plan as he or she wants. For some, this may mean giving one's estate to actors one has never met. For others, this might mean donating one's entire estate to a charity or dividing one's assets among family members. An estate planning attorney can help a person create a fitting estate plan.

Source: Yahoo News, "Man's estate left to actors he never met," Susanna Kim, Feb. 8, 2013

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