Posted by Michelle Young, Will Writing & Estate Planning Expert
These five mistakes are the most common people make when writing a Will. From ambiguous language to not having a Will in the first place, make sure you don’t fall into these frequently made Will writing traps.
As a record of your final wishes, there are few documents more important than your Will. Yet despite the importance of these documents, there are a number of mistakes many people make and which place the Will at risk of either being contested or not being accepted at all.
If you are planning to write your Will soon, here are the five most common Will writing mistakes you need to avoid making.
When your Will is read, you will not be around to clarify anything that people do not understand, so it is absolutely vital that your wishes are expressed clearly. Using vague language opens the door for someone to contest the Will, claiming that the meaning of what you intended is not known.
Whatever you decide to include needs to be understandable to an impartial third party, which is why preparing your Will with the help of a professional service is key. From the outset, they will be able to advise you whether what you are saying is clear and if not, how you can express it more effectively. Similarly, the language you use should also take into account any potential change in circumstances. For example, rather than saying ‘my two children’, it may be better to use the expression ‘any children that I have’ so that should you have more children they will also be covered.
If you have made a particular decision, such as leaving a person out of your Will, it is always a good idea to give a reason and to state clearly why you have done so.
That way it is apparent that the omission was intentional, and the person left off will not have grounds to contest the Will claiming that they were omitted by mistake.
In order to be considered legally binding, a Will must be witnessed by two independent witnesses, who ideally should not be benefactors in the Will itself.
Without having had your Will witnessed, it is likely to be deemed invalid and will not be executed following your death. A professional Will writing service will ensure this does not happen.
Circumstances change, and as such your final wishes may alter as you continue through your life. Following any important life change, such as marriage, divorce or having children, it is really important to look back over your Will and make any changes you feel are necessary to either include or omit people as you see fit.
The biggest Will writing mistake you can make is to not actually write one in the first place. It is one of those tasks that many people say they will get around to doing, either this month or next, but so many don’t. In fact, in the UK two thirds of adults do not have a Will, meaning that in the event of their death no one knows for sure what they want to be done with their estate.
If you don’t have a Will, find a Will Writer today and ensure that you don’t make these common mistakes. Funeral Planning Experts can put you in touch with a local Will Writer to help you get started today.
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