It seems that everyone wants to “DIY” these days, but there are some things best left to the professionals, or at least should be done with professional advice. This includes will preparation.
There are many consumer books and websites offering will and legal document templates but they are often cookie-cutter and generic. It’s our experience that the one-size-fits-all templates are not reliable. Why? Because every family situation is unique and the law is changing faster than the online “template makers” can adapt. A real, live lawyer can look at the bigger picture and the details at the same time to make sure your wishes are honoured when you pass.
Wills are very personal documents and should be customized for each person and family. Even seeking professional legal advice for standard will preparation is best to ensure the will language and contents of will hold up in court if needed. That’s why a legal professional who stays up-to-date on estate planning laws and precedents is important.
Types of Wills
When working with a lawyer for will preparation, you can still opt for a “standard will” and it’s often more affordable than you think. If your estate and wishes meet this standard then this type of will is a good, reliable option for you.
If you have more specific needs or family structures (such as blended families, or a spouse with children from a previous relationship), you may want legal advice to prepare a non-standard will. Other reasons to choose a non-standard will include:
- if you want to prepare a will separate from your spouse or partner,
- if a disabled person will be named your beneficiary,
- if you don’t want your estate divided equally among children,
- if you own assets with someone other than a spouse,
- if you want to disinherit a child, or
- if you want a trust company or professional trustee to be your executor.
It’s worth spending a couple of extra dollars to have your will done right the first time. You don’t want grieving family to be dealing with issues from a poorly created will. The will preparation lawyers at Dreyer and Associates Family Law has over 50 years of experience in estate planning and can help you create a will unique to you. Submit this brief questionnaire to get started.