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Procedures to Draft a Will

The procedures to draft a will is relatively straightforward as long as you comply with the laws of the country. It is essential to realize the importance of drafting a will for delegating their hard-earned properties to deserving heirs.

Seek for the insights of legal experts who specialize in will writing to provide you with objective and clear implications of your will.

Before executing a will, it is very important to understand some specific roles and contents included in a will.

Testator: The person who writes the will and whose property is distributed according to the provisions of the will.

Beneficiaries.  The persons named in the will by a testator who may receive the assets or property stated in the will.

Executor. This person is appointed as the personal representator of the testator, the executor is the person who has the responsibility to distribute the assets as per testators wish. Any person of sound mind and legal age can act as an executor.

Trustee. Executors or testators sometimes name people to manage specific assets of the estate for a period of time for the beneficiaries, especially if minor children are involved.

Legal Guardian. The person named by the testator to provide care for minor children until they reach legal age. Guardians are always established when a testator dies and no other parent is alive to take care of children.

Witnesses. These are independent persons of legal age who verify the testator’s signing of the will by signing it themselves, as well.

Contents of a Will

Some basic contents which may be included before writing a will are:

  • Details of testator
  • Inclusion of revocation clause
  • A clause appointing at least one (but preferably two or more) executors,
  • A list of legacies (gifts of money or goods),
  • A list of devices (gifts of property)
  • A residuary clause, disposing of the remainder of the estate,
  • the date
  • the testator’s signature
  • the attestation clause

Step by step procedures to draft a will

Step 1 – Value your estate

The person drafting will should have an idea of the assistant debts. This list should include everything from property to banked or commercial assets.

Assets may include

  • Movable and Immovable property
  • Jewel like or any other personal belongings
  • National savings
  • Investments such as stock and shares

Debts may include

  • Mortgage
  • A bank overdraft
  • Loans

Step 2 – Determine the ways to divide the property

This step includes assigning the heirs, a percentage of total assets. The holder of the will may also distribute specific pieces of property or cash amounts to individuals other than named heirs.

Step 3-Details of donation of the specific property

If the executor plans to donate specific property to the charity in the will, then it should include the charity full name address and registered charity number.

Step 4 – Choose the executors

Executors are the people who deal with distributing the estate after the death of the testator of the will.

Step 5 – Choose an expert

You can appoint a will drafting lawyer who specializes in drafting wills. The expert should be someone who understands the process can help explain how to structure your finances, organize beneficiaries, and create a list of Assets and Liabilities. The experts hired to write a will, may review it for one last time, and can also make any necessary changes.

Legal validity of a will

A will is valid only under specific conditions such as

  • should meet the age criteria as mentioned in the law.
  • Should have the mental capacity to understand the terms of the will.
  • The document should be in writing.
  • The document must be signed by the person who drafts the will.
  • Signature of a witness is also important to prove the validity of a will.

Review and updating a Will

It is important to review a Will regularly, especially after a life change or conduct a large purchase.  It is very important to make sure that the Will changes are kept with the original Will and that the executor has been informed about the changes made in the will

Reasons for updating will include:

  • Birth or adoption of a child
  • getting divorced or married
  • purchase of a new home or real estate
  • sale of a property previously listed in your Will
  • Relocating to another place
  • Death of one of the beneficiaries or executors

The quality of you will depend on the legal services that you hire to write it for you. At HHS lawyers and consultants can help to draft a will and also ensure asset protection, for both individuals and businesses. If you are seeking a legal consultant to draft you will then contact us for further consultation.

M. Al Khairy, LL.B. is a Senior Partner of HHS Lawyers in UAE. Practicing law for almost a decade, he has in-depth knowledge on UAE legislation with particular expertise on legal drafting, contract drafting, labor disputes, family law, and regulatory compliance for business organizations. Al Khairy also provides counsel on legal rights and obligations in the UAE to clients, including individuals and businesses subject to investigation or prosecution under Criminal Law by major regulators. Read more