Many of the dilemmas that sometimes come up with wills in Edinburgh, Indiana, such as contests brought by would-be beneficiaries, or devises which aren't clear on what they mean, can be avoided if the will is properly drafted in the first place.

If your estate does not have a huge amount of assets, your assets are limited to cash and personal belongings, and you wish to leave all your property to your immediate family and friends, the process of drafting your will is likely to be fairly simple.

Nonetheless, even if the will is comparatively simple, some problems which are very easy to avoid can still complicate the process. A reputable Edinburgh, Indiana wills and trusts lawyer can help you avoid these problems.

A significant percentage of the problems that prevent wills from taking effect are caused by failing to follow the required formalities in will preparation. In most states, wills need to be witnessed and signed by at least two people who have no direct interest in the matter. They further have to include a clear written statement that the document is, in fact, the testator's will. It also has to be witnessed by at least two people. Witnesses cannot be anyone who has a direct interest in the will, which encompasses close relatives of the testator and anyone who's named in the will.

Holographic Wills in Edinburgh, Indiana

In some states, "holographic wills" are legitimate. A holographic will is written by hand, in the testator's own handwriting. Such will do not need to have any witnesses to be valid.

Holographic wills are typically construed very broadly. Knowing that it was not written by an expert, a court will usually look at the common definition of words, and use other common-sense principles when it comes to interpreting a holographic will. This is necessary to avoid conflicts, and increase the chances that the testator's wishes are honored.

But you should be aware that not all states allow holographic wills. In these states, you are still allowed to hand write your will if you so desire, but they must be accompanied by all the formalities necessary by the law of that state.

If your state recognizes them, a holographic will might be a good option if you have a very small estate, and wish to make very simple devises. Nonetheless, it is never a bad idea to at least have an attorney review your will for completeness and clarity, even if you aren't having the attorney draft it from scratch.

How Can A Edinburgh, Indiana Lawyer Help?

Because of the formalities that are required for most wills to be valid, it is usually a good idea to have an Edinburgh, Indiana attorney help you make it, or at least go over it after you have written it, to make sure there aren't any problems with it.