Creating a so-called "simple" Will is usually a more lengthy process than might at first be thought.
The initial interview between the client (or clients, if reciprocal Wills are being prepared for spouses) and the lawyer usually takes at least one hour, and sometimes two. Questioning by the lawyer can be intense at times and the nuances which must be considered for "straightforward" matters are often surprising.
At the same time that instructions for a Will are taken, Powers of Attorney for Property and for Personal Care (the latter together with Advance Medical Directives -- so called "living Wills") are discussed and the client decides whether or not to use these planning devices as well. They do complement each other in important ways, but there are some important risks associated with Powers of Attorney for Property which are not present with the other documents.
When the lawyer has clear instructions, he drafts the Will (and the Power or Powers of Attorney and Advance Medical Directive, if applicable). This usually takes about an hour for the lawyer to complete.
If there are any matters for which instructions were incomplete, or if any issues need clarification the lawyer or a member of our staff will call you (or email you) to ask about these matters.
Once your Will (and any other associated documents) are prepared, our assistant will phone you and arrange an appointment for you to come in and review the Will (and other documents) as drafted. If there are any minor corrections, they can be made on the spot; for major changes another appointment may be necessary. This appointment usually takes about half an hour, sometimes more.
After you have reviewed the Will and any necessary changes have been made, the next step is for you to sign the Will (and other documents, if any) in the presence of two witnesses. (Some Wills require more than two witnesses. Whether or not your Will requires more than two witnesses will have been discussed during your earlier meetings with the lawyer).
When your Will has been signed you will be asked for instructions as to where you want to put your Will. If you choose to have us store your original Will (and other documents) in our Wills safe, we will also prepare written instructions setting out under what conditions and to whom each document is to be released.
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Page updated 30 September 2015