Do-It-Yourself Wills

So-called do-it-yourself are wills that individuals create themselves, usually with the aid of self-help legal literature. There are numerous guides, form books, websites, and fill-in-the-blank literature in the marketplace geared for non-lawyers. This material purports to help you create a valid will and avoid the costs of hiring an attorney to prepare a will for you. While this may be true in some cases, there is much to be cautious about. Mainly, the consequences of preparing a do-it-yourself will can be potentially devastating. If you die and your will is declared to be invalid, you will not be around to explain what you had intended to accomplish in your will. Instead, a probate court will either interpret your will or distribute your property according to the state intestacy scheme. Keep in mind that your will is an important legal document. If it is not prepared and executed according to state law, your entire will can be set aside by a probate court. Additionally, just about anyone who envisions an alternative distribution of your estate can contest a do-it-yourself will. If it does not meet some very stringent tests mandated by state law, the court can disregard your do-it-yourself will.


Inside Do-It-Yourself Wills