We do everything online nowadays: paying taxes, buying a house, managing bank accounts. It seems like you should be able to write a will online as well.
Ranging from bare-bones to fully featured, estate planning guides can reach prices north of $50.00. There are free ones that get the job done, but these may lack all the features you may need to put your mind at ease.
Here we review five options for doing your will on your computer:
Quicken Will Maker Plus ($49.99): Although not technically online, this is perhaps the most comprehensive piece of software for online will creation. Like other will creation software, Quicken uses an interview style format to ask you the important questions and then inserts your answers into a final will.
Pros: Comprehensive document creation (wills, health care directive, power of attorney, and revocation documents) that reflect the laws of your home state; The ability to designate multiple guardians for your children.
Cons: A little difficult to use; Not available online; Unavailable for Mac
Rocket Lawyer ($39.95): Rocket Lawyer’s solution to will creation is a complete package that rivals Quicken’s Willmaker Plus in terms of comprehensiveness. Its availability as a cloud-based solution allows all users to enjoy its powerful features (meaning it is a great alternative for Mac users).
Pros: Available online and in mobile format; One of the easiest will creation tools on the market today; In-depth help and support features.
Cons: Missing a checklist to help you keep track of your progress.
LegalZoom ($69.00) : LegalZoom is an online service that boasts most of the attractive features that its competitors have, and even surpasses the others in terms of contact options. While this software is on par with top-tier competitors, it is also the most expensive, and extra documents will cost you more money.
Pros : Excellent help & support options, whether you want to call, email, or use Facebook to contact LegalZoom, someone will be there for you; Offers the option of previewing the documents you have created before printing them.
Cons : Lacks a couple of features like spell check and progress indicators that would make the process easier; It costs EXTRA to create additional documents such as a Health Care Directive or Power of Attorney agreement.
Willing.com (Free!): Willing is an online solution that aims to make the creation of wills easier than ever. This website has a modern feel and doesn’t host any intrusive ads on its site. It has not been out for long, but aims to be one of the best will creation services out there. Their future plans include implementing a feature to help you make funeral arrangements.
Pros: Possibly the easiest guide to use, taking you from no will to completely covered in about 10 minutes (15 minutes if you watch Frozen in the background!); Modern look and feel.
Cons: Willing is a new company with a new product and has not yet been vetted through years of use. For complex estates, more established software might be a safer option.
Do Your Own Will (Free!): If will creation software is akin to cars, then Do Your Own Will is going to be your base model. We included this software because it allows you to create a sufficient document quickly and could be useful for last minute preparation. That being said, Willing.com may give this software a run for its money in the ease of use category.
Pros: Free software, Very simple; Includes a Famous Wills section (You know, because your estate is on Sinatra’s level)
Cons: Simplicity is not good for large estates, so depending on your needs, this software might not be the way to go.