Basic Will Requirements

In Estate Planning, Wills by Tarleton

A Will is an important legal document that allows you to determine the beneficiaries of your estate at your death.  It also provides for the manner and timing of the distribution of your property after your death, including deferring distributions with trusts.   All states, including Texas, have legal requirements for making a valid Will to ensure that a document should be honored as your Will. This is, in part, because of the importance of a Will and because you will not be there to clarify whether a document is a Will or not.  The legal requirements for a Will in Texas are primarily found under Texas Estates Code 251.001 and its interpretation under existing case law.   Under Texas law, a valid Will may …

What are the risks of DIY Wills?

In Probate, Wills by Tarleton

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CONSIDER THIS BEFORE WRITING A DIY WILL   Thinking about writing your own Will in Texas without an attorney?  First, consider the following points.   We all know that a Will is one of the most significant legal documents you’ll ever sign, and it provides an opportunity to: (1) have your wishes heard (and followed) and (2) make sure things go smoothly for your family after you pass.  An improperly written Will or incorrectly executed Will can end up failing to achieve either goal, and worst of all you won’t know until it’s too late whether you got it right.  If a mistake was made, your family will have to find that out at the same time they are dealing with losing you.   Every …