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Handwritten Wills: The Potential Problems

By : acelegal, November 22, 2017

Did you know that handwritten Wills can cause many legal problems, which can be upsetting and stressful for the beneficiaries? Handwritten, or holographic, Wills are legally valid provided that they are dated and signed by the testator (the person making the Will) and witnessed by two independent witnesses. There are, however, many cases where holographic Wills have been challenged and contested.

18954926 - last will and testament concept image complete with spectacles and pen.

Here at Irwin, Kilcullen & Co Solicitors, it is our priority to protect the interests of our clients, particularly where there are challenges to the expressed wishes they have left. We would always recommend meeting with an experienced solicitor to draw up your Will, and would advise against making a handwritten Will by yourself.

Avoid Confusion Over Your Will

  • Seek legal advice. Making a Will on your own can lead to many legal complications and is generally much less reliable than a Will drawn up by an experienced solicitor. If you have several assets, or your estate is of high value, you should certainly avoid making a handwritten Will as this is very likely to be contested.
  • Be clear in your intentions. Talk to your solicitor – and, if possible, your loved ones – and make your intentions for your Will clear. If you have specific personal gifts to make, you should prepare your loved ones for this to avoid confusion and arguments in the event of misunderstandings. Any plans you make that could be controversial should be common knowledge within your family if you want to avoid legal issues. For example, if you want to leave a substantial donation to charity, you should prepare your family for this to avoid them contesting it after your death.
  • Update your Will regularly. Many people are shocked to discover that their ex partner stands to inherit their estate because they have not updated their Will. This is a real issue that should be taken seriously, and you should consult your solicitor to update your Will if your circumstances change. If you have a child, or further children, or you begin or end a relationship, for example, you will probably need to update your Will, just as you would if you suddenly came into a large sum of money.

Talk To Wills And Probate Solicitors in Cork

We would always suggest that you make an appointment to talk to a specialist solicitor about your Will rather than trying to write it by yourself. Although it may seem easier to create your own Will, this brings many potential problems that can make life much more stressful for those who you wish to inherit your estate.

Contact Irwin, Kilcullen & Co Solicitors for a free consultation without obligation and benefit from our expertise in probate law. Simply contact us online or call us today on +021 4270934 to talk to our experienced and helpful team.