Most of the issues that can pop up with wills in West Caldwell, New Jersey, like challenges to the will's validity, can be avoided if the will is well-drafted in the first place.

Generally, the larger your estate, and the more separate devises you want to make, the more complex the process of drafting your will is going to be. For most people, however, the process can be fairly simple.

Nonetheless, even with "simple" wills, there are a few common stumbling blocks that often make things far more difficult down the road. Thankfully with proper will preparation, most of them are easy to avoid, with the help of a good attorney in West Caldwell, New Jersey.

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 West Caldwell, New Jersey

If you need to make a will quickly, some states allow you to write a "holographic will." This is simply a will which the testator hand-writes. These types of wills don't need to be witnessed.

Assuming that a holographic will is valid in your state, a court will probably interpret it very liberally, acknowledging the fact that it likely wasn't written by a lawyer. This is to make it much easier to actually give your wishes effect.

You should know, however, that holographic wills aren't recognized in many states. If you live in one of these states, you're still free to hand write your will, but, in order to be valid, it must be accompanied by all the formalities necessary by the laws of the state it is made in.

If your state allows them, a holographic will might be a good way to go in some cases. For instance, if you don't have an unusually large amount of money, and simply want to leave your assets to close family members, or even to a single person (such as a spouse), it probably wouldn't be a problem. Nonetheless, even in cases like this, it's never a bad idea to make a will with the help of a lawyer.

How Can A West Caldwell, New Jersey Lawyer Help?

Because there are certain formalities which must be followed in drafting wills, it's always a good idea to seek the advice of a West Caldwell, New Jersey attorney in drafting your will. Even if your will is going to be very simple, and you have the formalities all figured out, mistakes can be made.