Can I write my own will?

Date: May 01, 2007
Document Type: Article, Q&A

Anyone can write their own will or they can do so with the assistance of a solicitor specialising in wills.

Sometimes, people attempt a ‘homemade’ will without any guide or assistance but such documents often do not follow correct legal form nor withstand legal scrutiny; there are many formalities that a valid will must follow and legal assistance is really the best way to adhere to these.

There are also many ‘do-it-yourself’ will kits that offer a straightforward, low-hassle process with a minimum of fuss. 

However, your particular circumstances may require the more detailed attention of a solicitor, in order to form a customised will that best suits your needs and stands up before the law. Remember, if your will is not correct in every respect your wishes may not be followed. 

A trained solicitor, helping you each step of the way, will identify all your physical and financial assets and other property and construct a will with an eye on the many tax and legal considerations you will have to consider. He or she may even be able to help you identify the best way to distribute your assets among your loved ones. A solicitor can ensure your will conforms to the law, maximises your assets to the advantage of your beneficiaries and provides a clear statement of your intentions to your friends and family. A solicitor can also be appointed the Executor of your will, if you do not want to burden a friend or family member with that responsibility, or they can help you select the most suitable person for that task.

Paying a solicitor to do the job may seem like a luxury you can not afford but it may actually save you or your estate money by avoiding unnecessary expenses that may be incurred by an ambiguous or poorly structured will.

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