Can I Just Draw up My Own Will?

August 29, 2012

There are those who like to roll up their sleeves and do things for themselves, and there is nothing wrong with taking some matters into your own hands when it is appropriate. In a lot of cases you save money while you actually enjoy completing a DIY project.
It is important, however, to know where to draw the line. When it comes to drafting sensitive legal documents you would probably do well to steer clear of do-it-yourself documents, even though they are sold on the internet.
When you use Last Will worksheets and downloads that you find on the web you are leaving a lot up to chance. In fact, Consumer Reports magazine advises against utilizing these online outlets for several reasons.
They consulted with three different legal professionals who examined Last Will documents that were constructed utilizing the products that are offered by three of the leading do-it-yourself legal document websites. Their conclusion was that the wording could be misconstrued and that conflicts in clauses could be contained within these Last Wills. Many of these companies do not take into account the specific laws of your state, so it unnecessarily extends the probate case.
Consumer Reports ultimately stated that it is best to engage the services of a qualified estate planning lawyer when you are planning your estate rather than depending on a download that you find on the internet.
So the bottom line is this: Yes, anyone can legally draw up a last will. However, if you want to be certain that it actually stands up in probate court and will distribute your assets according to your wishes, it is best to draw up your last will with the benefit of expert guidance.

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