Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Updating my Holographic Will

Being so frugal or maybe even something worse, I didn’t want to fork over the money on an attorney to create a will. And, of course it takes time, appointments and trust in an attorney. Instead, several years ago, I did a little research using a book on Texas probate which was sent to me as a gift by a local funeral home!

The book gave some examples of wills, some common errors, what not to do and helped me hand write my first will. This is perfectly acceptable in the state of Texas and is referred to as a holographic will. It must be written only in the hand of the testator and signed by the testator; no date, no witnesses and no notary public are required. Perfect.

I made a copy of the document, stored the original in a fire resistant safe at the house and kept the copy locked in a safe at my place of employment.

I have not thought much about it since then, but of course, things in life change over the course of several years and the will needs updating. By chance, I also caught the Suze Orman show last Saturday where she provided a gift code to get a free copy of her online Will & Trust kit.

I had not watched her show in quite awhile and had forgotten how amusing it is to see her reaction to some of the unbelievable financial moves that people make. A lot of her advice seems like common sense, but every now and then she hits on something new to me.

In addition to the will, her software allows you to setup a revocable trust, Financial Power of Attorney, and an Advanced Directive / Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare.

What a deal! Of course, using her software will require two witnesses and a notary public. I figure it’s probably worth going through the questions to get info on these other documents and maybe add that wording to my soon to be updated holographic will. I signed up for the offer and created an account. It appears that I can go back at any time to work through the questionnaires and generate these documents.

1 comment:

  1. I saw her show and copied down the gift code as well....great minds think alike. =)

    My company has started offering a new service now where for about $18/mo you have access to free services to a lawyer which includes trusts and wills. I signed up for this year with the plans to get my will and trust created for a discount price.

    Regarding Suze Orman, it's true she says what amounts to be mostly common sense, but judging from what I see around me, common sense isn't so common these days.

    Case in point- can you believe one of her callers who borrowed $50K to send it to some stranger on the internet she never even met? Crazy! =P