DIY Will FAQ

No, there is no need to have a solicitor make your will “legal”. Your Lawpack Will pack has been prepared by barristers to ensure that it is legally valid. Simply follow the instructions and guidance that are provided with the Kit.

A solicitor does not need to witness your will. Once you have made a will it can be witnessed by friends or anybody else you trust and this act will make your will perfectly legal. The only people who shouldn't be witnesses are the beneficiaries of the will - witnesses can't inherit anything from a will they are witnessing.

Lawpack's paper Will pack comes with only one copy of each Will form. But if you purchase the 'Download Now' eKit, you can download the forms onto your computer and use them as many times as you like.

Yes, included in our Last Will & Testament Kit is Will Form 3, called “Residue direct to children”, where you can leave your estate directly to your children.

If your children are over the age of 18, you can also use Will Form 1, “Simple Gift of Residue” which is appropriate for leaving your estate to adults.

The Guidance Manual included in the Will Kit will outline which form you should use.

Although the Will forms have not changed significantly in the last five years, it is best to buy an updated Kit, as changes are made to the advice given in the Manual by the approving lawyers.

Lawpack's Last Will & Testament eKit is a downloadable version of the mailed Last Will & Testament Kit. Instead of the physical copy being sent out to you in the post, you can download the eKit instantly and save it to your computer.

If the child is over the age of 18, you can use our Will Form 1 called “Residue to Adult”. If the child is under 18, you currently will not be able to write a Will using our DIY Last Will & Testament Kit.

Spouses should make separate Wills. The form downloads in the DIY Will Kit (and eKit) allow you to draw up Wills in Microsoft Word and the physical DIY Will Kit also provides one of each type of Will on paper.

When using our Will pack to write your Will, you and your wife will need to write two separate Wills. Our 'Download' Now' Will eKit includes template Word Will forms which can be downloaded onto your computer and used as many times as you like. 

If you want to make a joint Mirror Will, you can use our Online Will Service or Bespoke Will Service - both provided by leading UK law firm Irwin Mitchell - and the Wills will be mirrored to reflect each other's wishes.

There are three types of Will included in our Will Kit. You should use only one Will form and your choice of form to complete depends on who you wish to receive the residue of your estate.

  1. Form 1 can be used if you want to give the residue of your estate to an adult, and provide for another adult to have the residuary estate instead if the first person fails to survive you by 28 days. This form may also be used to give your residue to a charity.

  2. Form 2 can be used if you want to give the residue of your estate to an adult, and provide for your children to take the residuary estate instead in equal shares if the adult fails to survive you by 28 days.

  3. Form 3 can be used if you want to give the residue of your estate to your children in equal shares in any event.

If you are married, both you and your spouse should write separate Wills. This is true even if marital assets are primarily in the name of one spouse.

The DIY Will Kit is suitable for making one Will. It can be used by a couple to make one Will each.

DIY Will Form 2 (Residue to an Adult, but if he/she dies to Children) and DIY Will Form 3 (Residue Direct to Children) have a clause where you can appoint a guardian after your death if you are the sole surviving parent. The comprehensive 72-page guidance manual included in our DIY Last Will & Testament Kit includes a section on appointing a guardian.

If any section is inapplicable, write ‘not applicable’ or ‘none’. This shows that you have not overlooked the section. If you do not fill the whole of one section, then put a line through the remaining blank space.

In our DIY Last Will & Testament Kit there is a choice of three Will forms for England, Wales and Northern Ireland and three Will forms for Scotland. The forms are: 

  • Simple Gift of the Residue, which is suitable if you wish to leave your estate to an adult or adults; 
  • Residue to an Adult but if he/she dies to Children, which is suitable if, for example, you wish to leave your estate to your spouse but if he predeceases you, then to your children; and 
  • Residue Direct to Children, which is suitable if you wish to leave your estate direct to your children.

It is only possible to leave the residue of your estate to children who are not your own if they are adults. In this situation you can use Will Form 1 in our DIY Will Kit.

You can request copies from Lawpack on 020 7394 4040 or you can email us.

Naming your children can avoid confusion where, for example, you have step-children you wish to benefit (who might not be considered as ‘your’ children), but it does mean that any children born after the Will and before your death are excluded. A reference to ‘my children’ in your Will will include any children adopted by you.

Lawpack's DIY Last Will & Testament is written and approved by a barrister, but your individual Will is not checked by a lawyer after you have made it. 

If you would like to write a Will and have it checked by a solicitor, please see our Online Will Service. By answering a 10-minute online questionnaire, you can write your Will and then have it checked by a leading UK law firm for the fixed price of £59.99.

Alternatively, we provide a Bespoke Will Service, where your Will will be written by Irwin Mitchell solicitors to suit your individual needs.

You need two witnesses who should be over 18 and preferably neither very old nor hard to trace. There is no reason why the witnesses should not be married to each other. However, it is vital that the witnesses to your Will are neither beneficiaries under the Will nor the spouses of beneficiaries. If a beneficiary or his or her spouse does witness your Will, the beneficiary will lose the benefit of his or her gift, but the Will remains valid.

In England, Wales and Northern Ireland one witness is not enough. You need to have two witnesses who are over 18. In Scotland, only one witness who should be over 16 is needed.

There is a survivorship clause included in DIY Will forms 1 and 2 which prevents your residue passing to the residuary beneficiary and then almost immediately passing on, either under the beneficiary’s Will or, if none, under the rules of intestacy, and result in a distribution you may not have wanted. If you and your spouse die at the same time, then the residue of your estate will pass to your replacement residuary beneficiary.

DIY Will form 3 gives all your estate direct to your children.

The witnesses do not need to know the content of the Will.

There are examples of wording to use in the guidance manual that comes with the DIY Last Will & Testament Kit.

The DIY Will Kit is written by a barrister and is reviewed every couple of months to ensure that it is still valid.

The Will Kit is not suitable for you if you own or have an interest in property abroad. You should take legal advice in the country where you are domiciled and in the country where you own the property.

Yes, you can appoint your spouse as executor and beneficiary.

It is possible to use DIY Will form 1 to give your estate to an adult and if they die to their children, if those children are also adults. If the children are minors, then none of our DIY Will Kit forms provide for you to leave your estate to them.

It is not essential to have a replacement executor, but you should try and name someone. This is in case your named executor is, for any reason, unable to act. If no executor is able to act, then the court will have to appoint an executor after your death and it may not be someone that you wish.

There is a small section on basic inheritance tax but the DIY Will Kit does not go into detail about inheritance tax planning.

You do not need a solicitor to write a simple Will. It is sensible to consult a solicitor if: 

  • substantial amounts of money are involved; 
  • you do not understand the instructions or are uncertain how to complete and use a form correctly; 
  • what you want to do is not precisely covered by the forms provided; 
  • you and your spouse have different domiciles or you own or have an interest in property abroad or have written a Will abroad.

If you want the security of letting a lawyer check your Will, then our Online Will is for you. Or you can have the peace of mind of a lawyer drawing up a Will to suit your individual needs with our Bespoke Will.

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