Even if you’ve never contemplated making a will, you’re probably familiar with the basics, perhaps from watching TV and movies.
A will enables you to assert your wishes after death. It ensures that your property and assets are distributed to the people you specify, leaving a bequest to charity, and your funeral is conducted under your wishes. Upon having this knowledge, you may be wondering how to write a will.
This article will walk you through creating a will to ensure that it is legal, simple, and free of errors.
Determine Your Eligibility to Make a Will
Anyone over 18 in Australia with the intellect to understand the inference of what they are writing can make a will. If the mental capacity of a will-maker is in doubt, it can be evaluated by a medical professional.
Ways to Write a Will
Wills in Australia can be written in one of three ways. DIY wills, hiring a solicitor, and using the Public Trustee’s services are options. Each has its own set of benefits and drawbacks.
1. DIY Wills
The advantage of DIY wills is that you can create them yourself and save a lot of money if you have few assets to leave behind. However, you must ensure the will is accurate, so have the public trustee or a solicitor check that you have completed the document correctly.
2. Public Trustee Wills
If you are over 60 or nominate a public trustee to become the executor of your will, public trustees would complete your will for free. It is worth investigating the costs of will and carefully considering your options.
3. Solicitor Wills
Hiring an experienced Will Solicitor is ideal if you need assistance drafting or executing your will. The advantage here is that they recognise what should and should not be included in your will, ensuring that everything runs smoothly and nothing is overlooked.
Write Down the Contents of Your Will
To be considered valid, your will must be in writing, either handwritten or typed. It would not be regarded as a valid will if only spoken to another person.
A will’s basic format includes the following elements:
- Rescinding any previous wills, you have made
- Naming the executor of the will
- Leaving a bequest to charity and mentioning who will be the receivers
- Any additional requests, such as what will happen if an executor or beneficiary dies before you
You Must Sign Your Will
Your will must be endorsed by you and two eyewitnesses who saw you sign it. The witnesses should not be named in your will to be eligible for benefits.
Inform the Appropriate People of Your Intentions
You should notify your executors that you have named them as executors of your will and inform them where they can find your will after your death.
It is up to you whether or not to discuss the contents of your will with the beneficiaries.
The Bottom Line
Why leave your will to chance when it is likely to be the most crucial document you will create in your life?
While following these guidelines will almost certainly result in your will being deemed valid, there are several other implications to consider when drafting a will. For example, it is critical to consider whether you will write your will, utilise a DIY kit, or hire a legal professional to do it for you.