Dangers of DIY Wills and Trusts

Wills and Trusts books at a library

Writing a will or trust may seem like an easy task. You might watch DIY videos or read articles, which makes you think that drafting one of these essential legal documents is a straightforward process. However, writing and executing legal documents on your own can have significant consequences. Even though it may appear to be cheaper and quicker than hiring an attorney, the risks of faulty documents and poor decision-making can later cost you and your loved ones dearly. In this blog, we will discuss the dangers of DIY wills and trusts and why you should consult lawyers like Kimberly T. Lee, Attorney at Law to get these documents done properly.

Lack of Legal Expertise

The biggest risk of DIY wills and trusts is the lack of legal expertise. People who write their wills or trusts without consulting an attorney may leave loopholes or mistakes in their legal documents, leading to unfavorable outcomes in court. Lawyers have highly specialized training and expertise, which is necessary when drafting legal documents. They know the different principles and laws that apply in each case, and they understand the language that should be included in such documents. Only an attorney with years of estate planning experience can properly advice you and to ensure that your wishes are documented correctly.

Improper Execution

In order for a will or trust to be valid, there are strict rules about how it needs to be signed, witnessed, and notarized. These rules vary depending on the type of document, the state where you live, and your individual circumstances. DIY options often lack the ability to properly execute your will or trust, leaving them invalid or unenforceable.

No Personalized Attention

DIY options might be able to give you certain types of estate planning documents, but they can’t offer you the personalized attention and care that working with a qualified attorney can. A good estate planning attorney can offer in-depth consultations, ask questions to understand your unique needs and goals, and tailor your will or trust to fully match your wishes.

Delegating Responsibility

Many DIY will or trust templates is based on “one-size-fits-all” and assume that you already understand the nuances of estate planning and have carefully considered all of your options. This is often not the case for the average person. In fact, many people might not even know what questions they need to ask themselves in order to ensure their wishes are met. Working with a qualified attorney can help ensure that your plans reflect your wishes accurately and completely.

Failure to Address Changes in the Law

The law is not static; it continues to evolve. Laws that apply today may not be applicable a year, two, ten or twenty years from now. Experienced estate planning attorneys keep themselves updated with any changes in the law and modify their clients’ wills and trusts accordingly. Failing to update your documents can invalidate them, which may lead to future legal battles that could have been avoided. A DIY will or trust may not address your changing needs and circumstances, often resulting in undesirable and costly outcomes.

Unintended Consequences

DIY wills and trusts may ralso esult in unintended consequences. Many people are unaware that writing a will or trust involves addressing complex legal concepts and potential risks. A common mistake is leaving assets unprotected or creating complications for beneficiaries. Incorrectly or poorly written legal documents may also expose those assets to high taxes or creditors. These documents may fail to reflect accurate information, and ultimately, your beneficiaries might end up with a small portion of what you genuinely wanted them to have. In worst-case scenarios, these mistakes may cost your family unnecessary legal fees and extended trust and probate litigation.

The Need for Professional Help

Consulting an estate planning attorneys like Kimberly T. Lee, Attorney at Law in Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, Indian Wells and La Quinta, is the best way to protect your family’s future. An experienced attorney has deep knowledge of estate planning, understand the intricacies of the law, operate in strict ethical bounds, and have several years of experience. Lawyers can properly prepare and draft your wills and trusts to ensure they reflect your wishes and meet all legal requirements. They also make sure that your documents undergo regular reviews so that they stay updated, relevant, and accurate.

Contact Desert Law Group Kimberly T. Lee Attorney at Law in Palm Springs Today!

DIY wills and trusts can have severe consequences and do not offer the same advantages as professional estate planning. Creating legal documents that provide protection for your loved ones is a serious responsibility that requires expert knowledge and experience. Giving peace of mind to you and your family with a comprehensive estate plan, rightfully prepared with Kimberly T. Lee Attorney at Law in Palm Springs. Call us today at 760-481-1144 to schedule a consultation.