Your relationship status does not determine whether or not you need a will. Most people should have a will. Even if you are single, a will can help determine who will get your assets (home, business, pets, etc.), name a guardian for your child, and designate an executor. Having a will before you pass is important to establish your wishes in writing so that there is no confusion about your intentions.
A will can be used to appoint a guardian for your children. A guardian is someone who will raise your children and manage their property if you die while the children are still minors. You may appoint one person to be responsible for custody and another to take care of financial matters, or the same person can serve both these roles.
However, it is important to note that the guardian you name in your will does not automatically take custody of your children. The court schedules a hearing to determine who should be the guardian. If your child has another legal parent, that person will almost always be given custody.
A will can help avoid confusion after your death because your wishes are written down, not passed on through word of mouth. If you do not have a will, your relatives might disagree over what they think you would have wanted. If you have a will, that eliminates this issue. If you are concerned about your relatives arguing even if you have a will, an attorney could help draft the necessary documents to avoid any future legal challenges.
For many homeowners, their home is the most valuable thing they own. If you are single, you should designate who gets the house if you die. Without a will, things could get messy. Intestate succession could even result in the forced sale of your home, with the proceeds split among your heirs at law.
If you own a business, a will can transfer your interest in it if you do not have an agreement with your other business partners. You should work with an attorney if you want to make an exit strategy for your business or want to transfer the business to your child or relative in the event of your death. An experienced attorney will be familiar with the state laws on transferring business interests and can help reduce estate and income tax consequences.