Homemade Wills – Prepared by Wightons Lawyers
The advantage of doing a homemade Will is that they can be done at home at little-to-no cost. However, doing a homemade Will can have some dire consequences.
In many cases, homemade Wills are executed incorrectly, contain mistakes, or other unintended consequences. These mistakes can result in the estate spending significant amounts of money in proving the legitimacy of the Will, correcting the mistakes or, in some cases, making an application to have the Supreme Court of Victoria determine what the Will means.
The costs in fixing the mistakes greatly outweigh the cost of having a solicitor’s Will. In some cases the errors can cost tens of thousands of dollars to rectify.
Here are some examples of errors which we have seen in homemade Wills:
- Mathematical errors in calculating shares;
- Poor description of people or intended gifted items;
- The purported gift of property which is not an estate asset;
- Gifts to entities which are not legal entities;
- Poor expression of intention resulting in confusion;
- Non-compliance with the formalities to make a valid will; and
- The homemade Will cannot be found.
Any one of these may result in an application being made to the Supreme Court of Victoria, resulting in stress, breakdown of family relationships, delay in administering an Estate and increased expense.
It is highly recommend that all wills are prepared by an experienced solicitor who can correctly identify the potential issues and avoid unnecessary difficulties.
We have a highly experienced estate planning team at Wightons. Should you need to complete or update your Will or estate plan, please do not hesitate to contact our office.