Whether you consider writing wills online a right or wrong move, there are crucial mistakes that invalidate a will. Moreover, with many things going on in our society today, we must be clear about the terms of the agreement when creating wills. Irrespective of status, wealth and job, making a will before death is too crucial to be ignored. Also, the mortality rate in some countries is dropping drastically, and we must prepare for these unavoidable issues that cause death.
It is no crime to die, everyone would pass, but it could be a massive crime if you don’t create a will. If you fail to make a transparent black-and-white and valid will before you pass, you may likely put your family in a difficult position. Even if you don’t consider writing online will as a possible thing or writing it at all, your concern about taking care of your family should be enough motivation. Moreover, it will help to guide your wishes with your values.
Writing wills online is a very straightforward process for anyone ready to do it. You can also start with different options, including free online kits and templates. But no matter which options you choose, there are costly mistakes you cannot afford to make when creating wills online.
5 Costly mistakes to avoid when making wills online
- Not giving responsibility to anyone
As much as you want to keep your will confidential, it is not right to not give anyone responsibility. The goal is that someone should be able to stand in your absence and do the rightful. That will at least require one person to serve as the executor of your will when the right time comes.
The executor of the created will is also responsible for distributing your assets exactly as you want them. So, you cannot wholly leave everyone in your life out when making your will. Otherwise, it defeats the essence of making it in the first place. An executor must be a very responsible person that has earned your trust.
You can inform them of your intention to name them your executor and get their permission. You don’t want such an important role to be a surprise. In some rare cases, you may consider having a second executor if something happens to the primary executor. Moreover, they may not be willing to execute when needed.
- Not caring for your kids
Ideally, one of the core duties that goodwill is meant to serve is to take care of your loved ones, including your spouse and your children. If anyone leaves the role of taking care of the children out of a will, it becomes an issue. You wonder how this mistake can happen, but it does when a testator or author does not name any particular guardian to take care of the kids.
As a result, caring for the kids becomes a bone of contention right after the person’s demise. Also, you will figure that this scenario can happen when the other spouse is no longer, and it complicates the issues of the children’s lives. In a case of death, the children probably suffer the most hurt, and the custody of their lives may be the beginning of their battle. No doubt, it may be pretty challenging to communicate these wishes to your family directly.
But we consider it also a necessary part of preparing for your family’s care now than later or leaving it to another person to decide. What about giving out your assets to your children directly? That also works. But if they are minors, achieving that takes a different route. There are some options you can put in place to do that. The commonest one is to create a trust account or a uniform account and defer access to when the child is of age before they can access it. Moreover, there is an act that cares for transfer to minors and how to go about it.
- Not understanding your state laws
State laws play a vital role in the creation, approval and execution of wills written online or traditionally. Fundamentally, the will must be according to the specific dictates of state laws which may differ from one state/province to another in Australia. The state that executes your will should also be the state of your legal residence, even if your home state is different. That is the basic fundamental principle of state laws in writing wills.
- Creating incomplete wills without signatures and witnesses.
Wills created online require that the testator completes it by appending his signature and that of two witnesses. Both witnesses must be 18 years or older. According to state laws, that will is incomplete and invalid without signing a will with two witnesses. In such a case, there is no assurance that it is yours and that the state should execute it. Also, note that the author must be in a sound mind and body state.
There must also not be any indication of a threat, pressure or coercion from anyone when making the will. These are general laws of will creation, whether online or otherwise. Any dispute over these conditions causes a dispute over the will, and the result may be that the will is not executed. Therefore, avoid the mistake of not finally signing your will and including two valid witnesses.
- Inaccessible will
What is the essence of creating wills online or otherwise if it will not be accessible at your demise? The goal does not end when you start a will. It also includes storing it and making it accessible after passing. When the time comes, at least, your executor should be able to access the will and execute it according to the terms you state. Are there some standard options when it comes to achieving this end goal?
First, you may store your will in a secure location, like a safe in your home or a safe deposit box outside. Meanwhile, give your attorney, accountant, or financial advisor a copy of the will if you have any. On the other hand, some courts can store your will for you as a public record, depending on if your local jurisdiction permits it.
Everyone needs to think about creating wills online because it is a smooth and quick process. But when making choices, you must avoid the five common mistakes we stated above. When you do, your loved ones will be in safe hands when you depart.