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9 Steps How to Make a Living Will Without a Lawyer

Creating a will in the United States without a lawyer is entirely possible and can save you both time and money. Here's a step-by-step guide on How to Make a Living Will Without a Lawyer, along with examples to illustrate key points.


Step 1: Determine Your Eligibility

In the United States, you must be at least 18 years old and of sound mind to create a will.

Step 2: Gather Your Information

Start by making a list of all your assets and their approximate values. This includes real estate, bank accounts, investments, personal property, and any debts you owe.

Step 3: Choose Your Beneficiaries and Specify Bequests

Decide who will inherit your assets and what they will receive. Be specific in your bequests. For example:

"I leave my house at [address] to my daughter, Adeline Steve."
"I leave $10,000 to my son, Lawyertise.Com."

Step 4: Appoint an Executor

Select someone you trust to be the executor of your will. This person will be responsible for carrying out your wishes. For example:

"I appoint my sister, Sarah Smith, as the executor of my will."

Step 5: Guardianship for Minor Children

If you have minor children, designate a guardian who will take care of them in case both parents pass away. For example:

"I appoint my brother, Michael Johnson, as the legal guardian of my children, Jane and Lawyertise.Com."

Step 6: Draft Your Will

Now, it's time to put your wishes in writing. You can use a simple template:

Last Will and Testament of [Lawyertise.Com]

I, [Lawyertise.Com], of [Your City and State], declare this to be my last will and testament.

1. Executor

I appoint [Executor's Name] as the executor of my estate.

2. Bequests:

   a. I leave my house at [address] to my daughter, [Beneficiary's Name].
   b. I leave $10,000 to my son, [Beneficiary's Name].

3. Guardianship

In the event of my death, I appoint [Guardian's Name] as the legal guardian of my minor children, [Children's Names].

4. Residual Estate

I leave the rest, residue, and remainder of my estate to be divided equally among my surviving children.

5. Revocation

I hereby revoke all prior wills and codicils.

6. Sign and Date

I sign this will on [Date] at [Location].

[Your Signature]

Step 7: Sign and Date Your Will

You must sign your will in the presence of witnesses. Most states require two witnesses who are not beneficiaries. For example:

Witness 1: [Witness 1 Name]
Witness 2: [Witness 2 Name]

Step 8: Store Your Will Safely

Keep your will in a secure place, like a safe or with your lawyer, and inform your executor of its location. It's a good idea to provide a copy to a trusted friend or family member as well.

Step 9: Review and Update as Needed

Periodically review your will to ensure it reflects your current wishes. Life events like marriages, divorces, or the birth of new children may require updates.


I, [Lawyertise.Com], being of sound mind and body, do hereby make, publish, and declare this to be my Last Will and Testament.

I revoke all wills and codicils made by me before this date.

I appoint [Name of Executor] as the executor of my will. If [Name of Executor] is unable or unwilling to serve, I appoint [Name of Alternate Executor] as executor.

I bequeath all of my property, real and personal, to [Name of Beneficiary].

If [Name of Beneficiary] predeceases me, I bequeath my property to [Name of Alternate Beneficiary].

I have signed this will on [Date] in the presence of two witnesses, who have also signed below.

[Your Signature]

[Signature of Witness 1]

[Signature of Witness 2]

Creating a will without a lawyer in the United States is not only possible but also accessible and affordable. This process empowers individuals to take control of their legacy, ensuring their assets are distributed as they see fit. While the steps outlined in this guide provide a solid foundation, it's crucial to remember that wills are legally binding documents, and the laws governing them can vary by state.

For those with straightforward estates and uncomplicated wishes, the DIY approach to will-making can be practical and effective. However, it's equally essential to acknowledge the limits of this approach. Complex family dynamics, intricate financial holdings, or unique legal circumstances may necessitate professional legal guidance.

In all cases, whether you choose to create a will independently or seek the expertise of an attorney, the act of making a will serves a vital purpose. It offers peace of mind, ensures your loved ones are cared for, and allows you to leave a lasting legacy that reflects your values and desires. The key lies in taking proactive steps to protect your wishes and those you hold dear, today and for generations to come.