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  • Nicole J. Zuvich

Why you should avoid do-it-yourself estate planning

Updated: Sep 27

A lot of people think that estate planning is simple. You just draw up a document and state who you want to inherit your assets, right? Maybe. The complexities of your estate plan really depend on the extent of your estate and how you want those assets to be passed down to your loved ones. But even in the simplest of estate plans, you should avoid turning to the internet for self-help guides and do-it-yourself resources. Here’s why:

  1. Many templates online use boilerplate language that may not conform to state law. This means that there’s a chance that the documents that you create will later be found legally invalid.

  2. Online resources won’t fully educate you as to your estate planning options, so you may miss out on opportunities to protect your assets and your loved ones’ futures.

  3. Most online guides and resources lead to an incomplete distribution of assets. This can leave your estate subjected to a costly and prolonged probate process, and your loved ones may end up fighting over assets.

  4. A DIY estate oftentimes fails to account for changed circumstances that can have a major impact on your estate and how assets are distributed.

We understand the urge to take matters into your own hands and to save some money on the estate planning process. But making a mistake here could end up being more costly than you ever imagined. That’s why we encourage you to discuss your wishes for the future of your estate and your loved ones with an attorney who can guide you through the process. Hopefully then you can avoid the pitfalls of DIY estate planning and develop the strong legal documentation that you, your estate, and your loved ones need and deserve.

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You have to take a variety of issues into consideration when setting up an estate plan, whether you need to figure out who to place in charge of your estate after your death or you have difficult deci

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