Do You Need An Attorney to Draft a Will in New York?

attorney will

Drafting a will is one of the most important things you can do to help plan for the future. A will is a tool that allows you to make the important decisions that will affect your estate after you have passed. As a testamentary document, it can help relieve the burden placed on your surviving loved ones. But what goes into drafting a will and do you need an attorney to do so? If you are asking yourself these very questions, please continue reading, then contact an experienced Putnam County wills attorney for more information.

Does New York law require you to hire an attorney when drafting a will?

According to the laws of the Empire State, you do not need an attorney to write a will. All you need to do is:

  • Write a document that declares in clear and unequivocal language that this document is your will
  • Sign it and date it in the presence of two witnesses
  • Have those two witnesses then sign and date it at the bottom

That may seem simple, but you will have a lot to consider when drafting a will.

Why should you draft a will?

If you die without a will, the New York State Surrogate’s Court will take over and appoint an administrator to collect and distribute assets. New York’s Trust and Estates Law essentially writes a will for you and distributes your assets according to the “Distribution Rules of Intestacy.” Generally, surviving spouses and children receive the assets in the manner prescribed by the statute, potentially creating a legal mess for your survivors.

Though New York State law does not mandate you to do so, you should strongly consider retaining the services of a skilled Putnam County estate planning attorney today.

Why should you engage a will drafting attorney in New York?

A proper will contains many moving parts, things you might not consider when doing it yourself. A qualified will drafting attorney will help you formalize your last wishes by helping:

  • You leave your property to those whom you care about in the manner and proportions you choose
  • You choose your executor
  • Your estate avoid incurring the cost of an administration bond to insure the faithful performance of the Executor by the Court, and
  • Have any estate taxes, which may be due on your estate, located among your beneficiaries according to your wishes, rather than statutory rules

Simple mistakes, such as obscure and/or equivocal language, can not only lead to confusion and further heartache, but to an unconscious betrayal of your final wishes. Give your last wishes the best possible opportunity to be fulfilled. Please give us a call today.

Contact our Firm

If you or a loved one needs assistance creating an estate plan, contact the Law Office of Andres D. Gil, PLLC today.

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