I often see or hear ads promising “hassle-free” and “fully-customizable” estate planning documents at “a fraction of the cost” of working with an attorney. LegalZoom’s website touts wills starting at $89 and says, “Many people finish in 15 minutes.” RocketLawyer’s tagline is “Legal made simple.”
We all know what they say about things that sound too good to be true, right? They probably are.
It is important for all adults to have an estate plan, regardless of age, health condition, or the value of their assets. In light of the current public health crisis, people who have avoided estate planning may feel compelled to get some basic documents in order quickly. As such, it may be tempting to go the route of an online service or template. This is a very bad idea. One mistake can completely upend a document’s meaning and legality. Often, it’s impossible to correct mistakes, and in the cases where modifications can be made, you (or your heirs) will be paying more to fix things than you would have had you hired an attorney in the first place.
Read my article, “The Dangers of Do-It-Yourself Estate Plans” for a more detailed explanation.