Should You Create Your Own Will in Texas?
There are lots of good reasons why you should be cautious about creating your own will, and Attorney Ray Kerlick talks about some of them in this vide0.
Summary of Why You Shouldn’t Create Your Own Will in Texas
– – Hi, this is Ray Kerlick, from Wadler, Perches, Hundl & Kerlick, and we’re here in our Fulshear Office today, to talk a little bit about wills, and estate planning. And specifically, why you shouldn’t attempt to create your own will, from an online form.
What we provide, here, in our offices in Fulshear, is a fast, and easy, and professional assistance, to create a will, that’s going to comply, with Texas laws, and guidelines. Essentially it’s a will that will do what you want it to do. So, why should you take a chance, on trying to do it yourself, when you can make sure that you accomplish what you want to accomplish, with professional assistance, or, what will end up being, in the final analysis, a cheaper solution.
If You Create Your Own Will, You May Not Have a Valid Will
And why do I say that? Well, the answer is we have dealt with lots of homemade wills. Folks go on the Internet, and they use a service, or they just try and Google it themselves, to find out what’s in a will. There’s a couple of problems with that. The first problem is: The will may, in itself, be facially invalid. And that is to say, it doesn’t comply with Texas requirements for a will; It’s not self-proved, it doesn’t have the proper witnessing, or the language in the will itself is inconsistent with what Texas law requires.
So that’s a basic problem, which means, essentially, you will end up without a will, and your heirs will end up in the process, of having to go through, an Heirship and Administration Proceeding, which will vastly exceed the cost it would have cost, to basically get the will handled, in the proper way, in the first place.
If You Create Your Own Will, You May Have a Will with Unintended Consequences
The second, in my opinion, much more important reason, that you won’t want to do something yourself, is you take the chance, that you will make a basic error, in instructions, that will result in very bad consequences for the loves ones, that you’ve left behind.
Let me give you an example: We had a situation, not too long ago, in which we had a person, engineer, who decided that he, was smart enough to handle his own will. And the answer is: Of course! He was smart enough, to handle his own will. But, doesn’t mean, that he should have handled his own will. And the reason is, he made a very basic mistake, and one that is not uncommon. He provided for certain things to happen, if his spouse did not survive him. And it made some very specific requests, to his kids, and his step-kids, and how they were going to be handled.
But it said nothing, about what would happen if his wife did survive him. And guess what that means? There was no provision, for what would happen, if he passed away, and his wife was still living! That’s foolish, it’s an easy mistake, but it’s the kind of mistake that folks make, when they’re not comfortable, or familiar, with how these things work. Yet they’re basic things, that have to be taken into account.
These are things like Bond Provisions; things like how to handle continuing ongoing obligations that may be out there for minors; things like Guardianships for minor children that may be in your custody; Testamentary Trusts; and No-Contest Clauses. These are all things that a lawyer can help you with, and basically, this is part of what we do, every day. If you try and handle it yourself, you are going to have to learn a lot of information, and then, take a chance, that you handle it in the right way.
Don’t do it on your own. Don’t rely on the Internet to give you answers that really are legal answers, and that should be answered by a legal professional. Make an appointment with us today, and let us help you get through this process, quickly, professionally, and with a little bit more assurance that you’ll get what you want at the end. Thank you.
Call for an appointment at 800-929-1725 today!