It’s your choice
It’s up to you to decide which type of will to write. However, it’s essential to know the differences between them so you can make an informed decision about what’s best for your estate and family.
You can get a solicitor to help you write your will and guide you through the process. A solicitor is an attorney or lawyer that provides legal services for individuals, businesses, and other organizations. You may want to speak with one about what type of will might be best for you considering your circumstances.
You can use a will writing service to create the document for you. These services typically guide clients by choosing and arranging assets, determining who should be guardians for minor children, naming executors, etc.
You can write your own will and execute it. Some people might choose to do this because they want complete control over the document, their life’s work or estate.
It’s essential to have a will because, after death, the state decides what happens with your estate. If you don’t specify who should act in specific roles or take care of your minor children/dependents, then someone else (perhaps not as appropriate) could be appointed by the court.
The main will-writing options
Use a solicitor to write your will.
This is the most common way people will write a will.
You can pay your solicitor1 to do it for you, or they might offer this service as part of their work. The benefit of using solicitors is that they have experience and knowledge in what should be included in wills, so if you are unsure how to write one yourself, I would recommend going down this route! This option also means there’s no need for legal formalities like making sure all the documents are signed by two witnesses, which could make things more complicated than necessary.
The downside of having someone else do your will writing is that sometimes these professionals charge high prices. Suppose somebody has just died without any money left behind them. In that case, the will’s executor needs to be paid, which could mean more expense for a family already going through an emotionally draining time.
You should consider a solicitor if:
- you are unsure what direction to go in with your will or how to organize it best.
- the person who will be writing your will has a good understanding of exactly which assets need passing onto different people and where they should end up.
- if there’s any uncertainty over relatives who may have been omitted from the wills of others because they were overlooked or forgotten about. This can lead to bitter family disputes that could have been avoided by doing things legally!
Expect to pay:
- around £200 for a solicitor to draft your will (this is cheaper than it has been in previous years, and you may be able to get legal aid)
- an additional fee if the lawyer needs anything extra like documents or information from people’s bank accounts.
Use a will-writing service.
There are also several will writing services2 available that can be accessed through legal networks. The downside is they may not give as much personal legal advice on what should go in there or how best to do things, leading to problems come inheritance time!
The person who will be writing your will has a good understanding of exactly which assets need passing onto different people and where they should end up. Suppose there’s any uncertainty over relatives who may have been omitted from the wills of others because they were overlooked or forgotten about. In that case, a will writer can ensure that these people are mentioned, so they don’t miss out.
Expect to pay:
A will writing service may charge a set fee for the document’s drafting, which is typically between $500 and $1000. This covers everything required to ensure that your wishes are met in total – including all relevant legal procedures (including publishing an obituary), not just what’s written inside.
You can also opt instead to pay by page, but this could be more expensive if you have many assets or children with different circumstances. It would also mean having to go through every element of your estate personally beforehand to know how much it’ll cost.
Write your own will.
You could also choose to write your own will, but this requires a lawyer’s help. This is usually more expensive, and you may need more than one person as a witness when signing it. You would also have the option of including advanced directives, such as where you want your body donated for medical research or how much control you want over what happens with children if both partners die.
However, in most cases, there are templates available online that can be downloaded free-of-charge – they’re not guaranteed to cover everything that might happen, so do ask an estate planning attorney first, though!
Some people feel unable to write their own will for themselves, so they may choose to create a last will in advance. This is agreed with an attorney who helps you decide what should happen after your death. You can leave everything equally between the children or divide it by age groups; give money away to charity; specify how much individual items of property are worth (for example, paintings) or say that all property belongs jointly among the heirs – this could be everyone’s equal share or just one child if there’s only one left alive at the time of death etc.
When should you write a will?
You should write a will when you have children or if you’re in debt. Suppose your parent’s estate is worth more than $100,000. In that case, it may be advisable to make sure that the person who inherits what they leave behind can handle their inheritance responsibly and without becoming over-tired with money problems.
It would also be wise to create one at age 25 for those of us still unmarried because we don’t know how old we’ll get before getting married; not everyone gets married where there are living parents, so this could depend on whether they want each child to inherit equally – but if two people marry then they should both sign wills together agreeing what everything means. And finally, all couples contemplating marriage (even if they’re already married) should create wills because their spouse can inherit the whole estate if anything happens to one of them. Still, if they both die together, their estate will be divided between each spouse’s children.
Things you should consider when writing your will
It would be best if you always considered the following factors when writing your will:
- who are the people you want to inherit your property?
- what do you want them to have from it, and in which proportions or values?
- how can they share the money left after paying for funeral expenses, taxes, etc.?
If you don’t specify this beforehand, then there may be problems related to tax payments. For example, suppose someone inherits more than £325 000 (or $408 300) within a year of their inheritance, not including any other income during that same period. In that case, they may have to pay something called an “inheritance tax”. This amount changes depending on where the person lives, so make sure to check the applicable tax law in your area.
Before making any decisions about what to do with your property, you must consult a lawyer or an accountant, and they help set up appropriate documents for this occasion.
Choose your executors
If you’ve written a will and appointed an executor to carry out your instructions for distribution, then they may not have the same interests in what should happen with the property that you do. Your executor is legally obligated to distribute all of your assets after death as per the terms set out by your will, so you must choose someone who has a vested interest in carrying out these wishes rather than just passing on their responsibilities onto somebody else. This could be difficult since many people don’t know how or don’t want to think about this subject until it becomes too late. If any family members would love to go into business together with you, make sure that they’re included among the executors.
The person who becomes your deputy or the “executor” of your will is legally required to follow through with everything you have instructed them to do once you are gone, and they may not want what’s best for you in this situation. The claims of those inherited from a deceased individual often differ significantly from the deceased individual, so it could be difficult for an executor to balance their interests and desires and those of all parties involved in a will dispute after death has occurred. If any family members would love to go into business together with you, make sure that they’re included among the executors because these types of legal disputes can get messy fast without careful planning and consideration beforehand by all parties.
What is the advantage of writing your own will?
The advantage of writing your own will is that you get to control the distribution of your assets.
How to choose a will?
The type of will you need depends on your circumstances and what you want to achieve.
What is the best way to write a will?
The best way to write a will is to:
- Write it clearly and concisely, in your own words.
- Be thorough with the information you provide in the document, so there are no ambiguities about what you want to happen after your death.
- Have someone who understands wills, but isn’t involved with distributing your estate, read through it before signing and has them make any changes if necessary.
What should I include in my will?
You want to make sure your assets are distributed appropriately, cover any potential legal obligations and provide for minor children or other family members who may need assistance after you’re gone.
Choosing a will is an important decision that can have a lasting impact on your family and friends. If you don’t feel like you are ready to make the final decision by yourself, we recommend working with an estate planning attorney who has experience in this area. They can help answer any questions or concerns you may have about wills, trusts, and other types of advanced estate planning documents.