Will kits – a small price now but an expensive disaster later…

September 11th, 2012 by

The basic objective of having a Will is to ensure that your wishes are clear regarding who is responsible for your estate and who benefits from your estate. So why gamble with Will kits that offer a one-size-fits-all form? Many may answer “it’s cheap”. This is a point that I cannot dispute. Indeed, the forms sold online are cheap and may even offer some peace of mind that your wishes, which are simple, are at least written down somewhere….and that’s better than nothing, right? WRONG!!!

The truth is that Will kits often create much bigger and more expensive problem(s). Improper signing is a recurring problem with Will kits. That is to say that there is only one witness or the witness is an improper one; sometimes the testator does not even sign his or her own Will!

Improper signing can bring into question the validity of a Will and open it up to challenge from a beneficiary or someone classified as a “dependent”, whether or not he is named in the Will. Unfortunately, these are common occurrences and may result in having to make an application to Court to prove the validity of the Will or, in certain other cases estate litigation – both scenarios will cost more than having a proper Will made with a lawyer.

There is no substitute for competent legal advice regarding the making and signing of your Will. A lawyer will listen to your wishes and offer options regarding how to structure your Will. Finally, a lawyer can help you see the bigger picture beyond your Will and offer broader estate planning insight regarding proper asset designation for further tax savings. This approach is in no way a one-size-fits-all solution nor should it be.

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