The case of a religious woman in Australia illustrates the dangers of do-it-yourself wills.
Australian woman Sandra Marie Hatton was a very religious woman. She wanted to give most of her assets to charities that carry on religious work.
Instead, she used a do-it-yourself will form.
Hatton filled it out and then proceeded to make many handwritten changes to it, as she changed her mind about which charities to benefit.
That could end up costing her estate a lot of money, as News.com.au reports in "Unholy row as court decides on religious woman's will."
The will itself has been accepted into probate as valid.
Now, the court also has to decide which of the handwritten changes to accept as valid.
The charities who could benefit from the decisions are all eager to stake their claim and lawyers will have to be hired by Hatton's estate to help in the case.
Do-it-yourself wills, whether purchased in a kit or online, offer people a way to save some money by cutting out estate planning attorneys.
Unfortunately, as is the case with Hatton's will, things often go wrong with these DIY wills because the people who create them do not know what they are doing.
In the end, that DIY approach costs the estate a lot more money in the long run.
Reference: News.com.au (Oct. 15, 2017) "Unholy row as court decides on religious woman's will."