In this computer age, when so many tasks are accomplished via the internet — including banking, shopping, and important business communications — it may seem logical to turn to the internet when creating a legal document such as a will . Certainly, there are several websites advertising how easy and inexpensive it is to do this. Nonetheless, most of us know that, while the internet can be a wonderful tool, it also contains a tremendous amount of erroneous, misleading, and even dangerous information.
In most cases, as with so many do-it-yourself projects, creating a will most often ends up being a more efficient, less expensive process if you engage the services of a qualified attorney. Just as most of us are not equipped to do our own plumbing repairs or automotive repairs, most of us do not have the background or experience to create our own legal documents, even with the help of written directions.
In certain cases, the need for an estate planning attorney is inarguable. These include situations in which:
It has always been possible to write a will all by yourself, even before the advent of the typewriter, let alone the computer. Such a document, however, is unlikely to deal with the complexities of modern life. Many estate planning attorneys have seen, and often been asked to repair, wills that have mistakes or significant omissions. These experts have also become aware of situations in which the survivors of the deceased wind up in court, spending thousands of dollars to contest ambiguously worded or incomplete wills. Without legal guidance from a competent estate planning attorney, creating a “boxtop” will can result in tremendous financial and emotional risk.
Evidence that many other complications can arise when an individual creates a will using generalized online directions can be found in the following facts:
Self-constructed wills often become problematic when the testator:
In order to ensure that you leave your assets in the hands of those you wish, and to avoid leaving your loved ones with bitter disputes and expensive probate costs, it is always wise to consult with an experienced estate planning attorney when making a will. In this area, as in so many others, it is best, and safest, to make use of those with expertise in the field.