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

If your estate doesn't include a lot of money and property, and you only want to leave your assets to a few people, making a will can be pretty simple.

However, even with "simple" wills, there are a few frequent stumbling blocks that commonly make things far more difficult down the road. Luckily with proper will preparation, most of them are easy to avoid, with the help of a good attorney in Lancaster, New York.

Most of the issues that plague wills stem from failure on the part of the drafter to comply with the required formalities. These requirements aren't terribly confusing, but they have to be followed to the letter if a will is to be valid. Normally, wills have to be witnessed and signed by at least 2 people, and it must include a clear statement that the document is, in fact, a will. You should choose the witnesses carefully, because if they have any direct interest in the will, they won't count as valid witnesses.

Holographic Wills in Lancaster, New York

If you need to make a will quickly, some states authorize 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.

A holographic will, where they are authorized, will typically be interpreted liberally, to give effect to the testator's intent if at all possible.

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 required by the laws of the state it is made in.

If your state authorizes them, a holographic will might be a good way to go in some cases. For example, 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. However, even in cases like this, it's never a bad idea to make a will with the help of a lawyer.

How Can A Lancaster, New York Lawyer Help?

Because of the various required formalities that accompany a will, it's not a bad idea to have a brilliant Lancaster, New York attorney help you draft your will, even if it is relatively simple.