Yes, a person is entitled to write their own will. It is important to ensure that the will is recognised as being made by the relevant person and is legally valid. If a will is declared as legally invalid after a person’s passing, their estate would be dealt with as if they had not written a will i.e. under the rules of intestacy.

Some of the things that a will must have to be valid are, as follows:

  • The will is signed, dated, and witnessed correctly.
  • Spelling is correct especially when it comes to people’s names. Identities can be further clarified by referring to their connection to the person making the will or their home address.
  • The will should be specific. For example, instead of saying ‘my daughter’, using the daughter’s name would be specific.
  • The will should state that it is the only valid will and that previous wills are no longer effective. Previous wills should be destroyed.
  • The will should nominate a trustworthy person to carry out the final wishes of the person making the will. They are known as an executor. This person should be told where the will is kept.

It is highly recommended to seek legal advice when making a will. This is because disputes could arise over the validity of the will and the final wishes contained therein.

Wills can be sourced affordably and, in some cases, free of charge. Some charities offer free wills and there are schemes such as Will Aid month in November when law firms offer free will writing services.

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