Can I Write My Own Will?

Sure, you can write your own Will. You can do it on line or use one of the services.

If you understand how life insurance, a house, joint property, separately titled accounts, accounts with a beneficiary, retirement accounts, special needs children, estate taxes, people who might contest your Will, digital assets, and your spouse effect your Will and Estate, you might be a good candidate to write your own Will or use an online service.  Make sure you do a Power of Attorney and a Healthcare Directive too.

And always, writing your own Will (provided you follow the execution requirements) is better than nothing.

But, writing your own Will is a bit like fixing your own computer.  A lot of bad stuff can happen and boomerang consequences result and you won't even know it.  

Hey, if all you have are a small bank account and a car, write your own Will.  Beyond that, it is a nightmare requiring a deep knowledge of the Law, finance, banking, insurance, tax, retirement plans, investments, trusts, and estates.

Writing your own Will can have unintended consequences.  It can also make it harder and more expensive to probate the Will after your death.  

If it isn't executed properly with two witnesses, it isn't even a Will.

To have a valid will in Connecticut, it must meet certain requirements:

  1. Be in writing
  2. Be signed by the testator
  3. Be signed by two witnesses, each of them signing the will in the testator's presence. 

Generally, a handwritten or holographic will is valid in Connecticut if it meets the execution requirements. However, the handwritten will that is only signed by the person writing the Will ("Testator") is not valid in Connecticut.  It may be in some other states.  

My advice is to have a Lawyer prepare and execute your Will.  This is not a game for amateurs.  In the long run, it won't be cheaper either.

Elder, Wills, Estates, Trusts, Special Needs Tax & Business Law; Attorney John Sweeney

Sweeney Legal, LLC, provides legal, practical, and business counsel to Seniors, families, and businesses in the Fairfield, Connecticut area, including the communities of Bridgeport, Bethel, Brookfield, Danbury, Darien, Easton, Fairfield, New Canaan, Newtown, Norwalk, Redding, Ridgefield, Stamford, Weston, Westport and Wilton. John is also licensed in New York serving Westchester County including the towns of Bedford, Lewisboro, Mount Kisco, North Salem, Pound Ridge, and Somers.

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