Online Wills: 5 things to consider

General

Despite the importance that has been placed on writing a will, a lot of people, especially people who have minor children do not even know where to get a will written. In recent times, a lot of will writers have taken to providing services that make it easier for people to have access to will writing services without having to go to a solicitor’s office.

There are online will templates that allow you to fill a will form that you can then print out and have your will available within minutes. There are also some will writer’s that offer online interactive services, they guide you through the writing process just like it would have been if you were seeing an actual writer.

Due to the fact that writing a will is a very important aspect of estate planning, it is wiser to have a will written before your demise. If you pass on without a will, your estate gets distributed according to intestacy laws in the UK and this would definitely not be your wish or that of your relatives. If you are worried about how to get a good solicitor or how much it will cost to get a solicitor to write you a will,  then considering cheaper options is a smart move.

Writing an online will

Writing a will online can be a pretty simple and straightforward process if you understand legal terms associated with writing a will. If your estate is small and your assets are straightforward and simple to distribute, then you will find writing an online will pretty easy and straightforward. It is however important to note that, if your estate is large or your assets are not straightforward or there is an instance in which you want to exempt a relative who must be your beneficiary in the distribution of your wealth, it might be safer to just get the services of a solicitor. The solicitor can help you handle all that by knowing how to go about including clauses in your will that indicate your wishes appropriately.

Usually, when you are writing an online will, there are instructions that have been designed to be simple to comprehend and would guide you on how to go about writing the will. Most times, all you have to do is provide answers in spaces that have been provided and when you are done, you can print out the forms and you have your will.

To start will online, you might be required to create an account or register your details and this might be used to create the introduction of your will. Like a will you’ve drafted by hand, you will be required to fill your beneficiaries, divide your assets and allocate percentages of your assets to your heirs, name your executor(s), name a legal guardian  for any minor children you might have and after you are done filling out the form, you can print them out, sign them and have your witnesses sign them too.

Benefits of an online will

Online wills are typically cost effective. Comparing an online will service to an actual hire-a-solicitor to draft your service, you would realize that it is inexpensive to turn to using an online will template/service. The cost of a solicitor drafting a will for you might cost four times more than you would pay for using an online will to draft your will. Typically, with an online will, there might not be additional fees to cover services like legal advice, that your solicitor might provide.

Online wills give you a sense of privacy. To draft your will online, all you would need will be an access to internet connection. This means that you can get it done in the privacy of your home. If you are someone who is reluctant to share information about your assets with a third party, drafting a will online might be a preference for you.

Also, online wills are easy to access and update at your convenience. If you have gotten the services of a solicitor to draft your will, this would mean having to book appointments and schedule meetings anytime you have a reason to update the will. With an online will, you have easy access to the will when it is time to update and you do not have to schedule meetings.

Complications that come with an online will

The first problem with online wills is that they are prone to errors. When you fill out the forms, you fill them out according to what you have read and what you understand. If for some reason you do not understand and particular question and the answer you have provided is not accurate, there will be no way to know that except you take the will to a solicitor for it to be cross checked. Some online platforms offer support services but they still wouldn’t measure up to hiring a solicitor who can easily confirm if you understand what is being said and if you are sure of your answers.

Your will is supposed to be executed according to the local laws. Online wills are usually prone to improper execution. If you don’t understand the legal jargon that comes with writing a will, you might find it difficult to follow instructions given to you and this could make your will invalid before a probate court. This, in effect means that your will be seen as void.

Conclusion

Despite all the benefits that come with writing an online will, you should understand that it is quite easy to make errors while drafting one and it could render your will invalid before a probate court. An invalid will can lead to your property being distributed according to intestacy laws and this could lead to your family having to spend more money to rectify the problem