Roughly 60% of adults in the U.S. do not have a will, and you may be among them.

Preparing a will is often the first step in estate planning and one that will give you and your loved ones peace of mind. Even if you are a millennial or younger, making a will is a good idea for a number of reasons.

A little background

A survey undertaken at caring.com found that six out of ten American adults have not created a will. Even more shocking is the 78%  of millennials, ages 18-26, who have avoided doing so. The survey also found that 64% of the Generation X group, ages 37 to 52, do not have wills.

What happens

If you die without having written a will, the state of New Hampshire will decide the distribution of your assets. For example, if you are married, the court may award your entire estate to your current spouse, or possibly divide it between the children of your first marriage. If you are single and have no children, your assets will likely go to your next of kin, such as your parents or siblings. If you have a domestic partner, he or she will not inherit your assets as you might have wished. Instead, they will go to your biological family.

A gift to others

From devastating accidents to debilitating illnesses, no one knows what will happen in life. Whether you are a millennial or a septuagenarian, a person of great wealth or modest means, creating a will allows you to express your wishes as to the ultimate distribution of your assets. It is one of the best gifts you can give to those you leave behind.