If you want to make a will, you may wonder if you actually need an estate planning lawyer. Maybe you have seen will forms that you can print from the Internet, or you have a family member who wrote her own will. But the truth is that using an estate planning lawyer is the safest and most reliable way to make a legally enforceable will that properly conveys your wishes.
How Can an Estate Planning Lawyer Help Make Your Will?
Estate planning lawyers provide many services in connection with wills, including:
- Writing the text of the will
- Giving input on the will’s contents and whether the wording will effectively convey your wishes
- Talking to you about the effects of the will, such as possible estate taxes
- Providing appropriate witnesses
- Making sure that you execute the will correctly
- Holding onto a copy of the will
- Adding a new section to the will or rewriting it if needed
- Helping out your family with estate distribution and probate court issues if you should pass away
If you were to write your will yourself, you would not receive any of these services. In fact, your family might need to hire a lawyer later at potentially greater expense if there are issues with enforcing your homemade will.
Which Issues Could Arise with a Homemade Will?
Unfortunately, many families run into problems when relatives decide to handwrite, type, or print out wills rather than seeing a lawyer. For example, the handwriting could be hard to read, there might be additions written into the margins that may or may not be legally enforceable, the will might omit a spouse or children inadvertently, or the document might have been improperly signed without witnesses. All of these issues might lead to prolonged battles in probate court that could have been avoided with legal help.
While some people ultimately decide to make their own wills, it truly is safer to visit a lawyer before making any estate planning documents on your own. You can get your questions answered by a knowledgeable practitioner, have documents prepared that meet your needs, and most of all have peace of mind about your wishes and goals.
Want to start planning your estate by making a will? Local attorney Andrew Szocka, Esq. provides thorough and speedy estate planning help in the Chicagoland area. To schedule a free initial consultation, visit the Law Office of Andrew Szocka, P.C. online or call the office at (815) 455-8430.