Or: Why you should search for a “will and trust attorney near me” instead of an “online will”
Whether you do-it-yourself with an online will or hire an attorney to draft one, an estate plan simplifies the decisions your family must make after you are gone. Your family will have a lot of questions that you won’t be around to answer. An estate plan makes sure your assets are distributed to the people you want to have them and your wishes are carried out explicitly. An estate plan also dictates power of attorney for healthcare decisions and finances if you are unconscious or unable to speak.
These days, many people have turned to online wills as an alternative to hiring an experienced will and trust attorney. Before you decide what’s best for you, there are several pros and cons to consider.
Pros of an Online Will:
An online will can be drafted and proofread for a low one-time fee.
With an online will, the turnaround time for an initial draft can be minutes. A proofread and verified copy can usually be available within a day or two.
3. At Your Convenience
An online will can be drafted in the comfort of your own home.
An online will program is a downloadable template of legal documents and software. It is designed to walk you through the process of filling them out using a series of prompts and questions. There is no legal wording and everything is written to be easily understood.
Cons of an Online Will:
1. Potentially Discredible
There are several requirements that must be satisfied when executing a will in the State of Nevada. If these requirements are not met, your will may be invalid and unenforceable, and then your will can be voided by the court system.
2. No Flexibility
An online will does not have the option to include all your estate planning. These documents do provide a degree of personalization, but they are not always ready for personal, complex, or involved wishes or procedures. There is an edit button available on some online will programs, but users beware. If you are not knowledgeable of the law, using this option could void your will or leave it open for dispute after your death. It is highly recommended to hire an estate attorney if you have multiple large assets or complex wishes to be carried out.
3. Simple or Vague Language
According to a 2012 Consumer Report, unless the legal situation was as simple as a someone leaving their estate to their spouse, these documents can be inadequate. One expert noted that many aren’t specific enough and some have language that could produce an unintended result or fail to covey the decisions of the will drafter.
4. Not Personable
There are many aspects of your estate you may not think about when drafting your online will. They don’t always address things like how your estate taxes should be paid or what happens to the assets you acquire after signing the will. Hiring an estate lawyer ensures you achieve the best possible result. An estate attorney can help you decide on the best, clearest verbiage for your intended wishes. They are also available to work with your accountant or financial planner to maximize your assets for as long as possible.
LeAnn Schumann is Our Knowledgeable, Experienced Estate Lawyer at Jesse Kalter Law
No document preparation company can replace the knowledge, compassion and understanding of an experienced estate planning lawyer. LeAnn Schumann has the experience to make sure your final wishes are carried out after you are gone, no matter how complex. She is available to serve Reno, Sparks, Carson City, Fallon, Fernley, Dayton, Yerington, Douglas County, and all other Northern NV rural counties.