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Beware of Online DIY Wills and Trusts

Posted on in Estate Planning

Lombard estate planning attorneyMany people realize at some point in their lives that they need to start planning for a time when they are not around. It could be the addition of a new baby in the family, retirement, or a medical crisis that spurs a person’s interest in estate planning. For those seeking the cheapest estate planning process possible, using online legal document services may seem like a good idea. Although some do use these types of products with success, relying on an online service to plan your final affairs can be a risky move.

Do Not Be Fooled By a Professional-Appearing Website

Online legal document services may appear to offer the same benefits as a law firm, but they do not. These types of services do not hire attorneys, but instead “document assistants”—individuals who do not have nearly the extensive education and training an attorney has. A document assistant cannot help you choose the best legal option for your unique estate circumstances or warn you if you are making a grave mistake while creating your plans. Because the people involved in these online service websites are not lawyers, they cannot give you legal advice of any kind. In fact, the websites cannot even promise that legal documents drafted though the service will be valid or that there will be a usable result from the time, effort, or money spent on these online services.

A person who uses a do-it-yourself legal document service is risking that the plans they have created are not legally enforceable. So for example, let us assume that a person creates a will which states that specific assets or sentimental items should go to his children. If that will is found to be invalid during probate, the individual’s children may not receive the inheritance their father intended. Instead, the state will decide how the deceased’s property and assets will be disseminated.

Vague or erroneous wills and trusts created by unprofessional document assistants can leave survivors of the deceased to clean up the mess. Families often spend upwards of thousands of dollars to contest a will. Creating an estate plan with the help of a licensed estate planning attorney means that you can rest easy at night knowing that if anything happens to you, your final desires will be fulfilled and your family will be taken care of.  

Hire an Attorney You Can Trust

While everyone appreciates a good bargain, those who use online legal document services to create a will or trust are risking that those documents may not hold up in court. The money which an individual saves using a do-it-yourself estate planning website may be nothing compared to the financial and personal mayhem which an invalid estate plan can cause their family. If you wish to speak to an experienced estate planning attorney in Lombard, Illinois, contact A. Traub & Associates. Call 630-426-0196 to schedule an appointment today.



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