A Will is probably the most essential document in our life. It is the document that can ensure your wishes on how your property will be distributed are carried out after you have passed away. Will is also a crucial part of estate planning.
When Wills are drafted without the input of a lawyer, mistakes usually occur in almost every case. Some mistakes are very common and likely to occur if you prepare your Will on your own.
But, no matter how simple a mistake it is, you can’t afford to do it when you make a will. It may lead to disinheriting a loved one.
Mistakes to Avoid When You Make a Will
The following mistakes are the most common when people draft a will without the assistance of an attorney.
Not Having an Alternative Executor
An executor is someone you assign to carry out your wish written in the Will. People normally name their younger relatives as an executor so that he/she can outlive you. But, your first named executor may predecease you or unable to perform the duty for some reason.
So, you need to prepare for the worst-case scenario. You should name a second executor just in case. If you don’t name an alternative executor, the court will select an executor for you. It may not serve the best interest of you.
When noting down the assets, we often remember the tangible assets; the house, the car, the watch. However, we sometimes forget or miss adding some of the intangible assets. You mustn’t forget to note down your bank accounts, shares, bonds, retirement savings, and any other potential fundings you have.
You may also don’t want to forget your digital footprints. This may include any essential digital accounts, personal photos, documents, and journals.
Failing to Provide for the Situation Where the Beneficiaries Die before Benefactor
It’s a pretty common mistake people make when they draft their Will. No one actually wants to think that they may, in some cases, outlive their children. But, when you prepare a will, you should think practically. The Will provides for a second beneficiary if the first-named beneficiary predeceases that individual.
If the Will doesn’t dictate an alternative beneficiary and the deceased beneficiary leaves a spouse, children, or siblings surviving, then the bequest will be distributed among them. But, the benefactor may not want to happen. So, the clear outlining of the fate of the assets should be worded thoroughly.
Being too Specific
When we draft a Will, we should be careful about not missing any point. But, you should also be cautious about being too specific. Things can change after you prepare the Will. For example, you plan to leave your latest car to your youngest child, but for some reason, you need to sell the cars. Now, it can lead to further disputes and confusion.
Making Changes After the Will has been Signed
It happens many times when people prepare Will on their own. Once you sign a Will, it’s not easy to amend or readjust it. There is a whole different procedure for it. You have to create a new Will to put things in the right place. It’s a highly complex matter, and you don’t want to do that. So before making a Will, make sure that everything is addressed accordingly.
Not Having an Original Copy
Remember that you have to hand down the original copy of the Will to your executor. Without the original document, your executor may run into a bit of trouble getting a grant of probate to manage your affairs.
Preparing a Will is not an easy task. If you want to prepare the draft without any input from an attorney, you have to be careful about the mistakes. If you face any problems or have any questions regarding preparing Will, please feel free to contact us.