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Thomas McJD
Thomas McJD, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 3170
Experience:  Wills, Trusts, Probate & other Estate Matters
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I need to get a will done elderly friend of mine. I have a

Customer Question

I need to get a will done for an elderly friend of mine. I have a florida Will from the library, just needed to confirm I am doing it right
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Estate Law
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

In order to have a valid Will in Florida it must be witnessed by two separate people who are not in the Will. It also needs to be signed and witnessed in the presence of a notary.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
do the two separate people need to sign it in front of a notary or can they be alone?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Is there anyway I could call you to confirm how to do the will correctly.?
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

Yes. Everyone needs to be in eye contact with each other. The notary needs to witness all the signatures. You can confirm the requirements in the Florida Statutes.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This can be anybody, it doesn't matter who?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I don't want to read florida statutes, I'm not a lawyer
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
will the notary know how to fill out form properly and that I have the right form? I just got the form at the library for a simple will
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
you don't have to call me it's ok
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
maybe this form I have is ok, we meet at UPS for a notary and that's it, sign it and that's all I need to do?
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

I'm sorry I had to log off. Yes all you need to do is go to UPS with both witnesses so that the notary can watch everyone sign.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I need some more help with this form can I call you or you call me please?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
There aren't that many questions, or if you know where I can get a better form?
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

It is highly recommended you take your friend to an attorney to properly have a Will prepared. For starters, the attorney will determine competency, which is required when executing a Will. The attorney will provide the Witnesses and Notary.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm not sure where to go for an attorney, it would have to be pretty cheap I'm afraid. He doesn't like spending money (even though he has it) and I don't have very much-- that's the problem! You know where I can go for cheap
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

You can contact the Florida Bar Referral Service.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
if I try to do it myself than there is a good chance it won't work I guess.
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

You are not an attorney and therefore technically not allowed the practice law. Your friend may make a Will on his own behalf, but it is not recommended that a friend prepare it.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Right, so how does he make a will on his own behalf, he has to fill out the form himself, or he just writes something up free hand, can you show me a sample of what it looks like. I may be able to talk him into doing this if he knew how.
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

There are several websites that offer Last Will & Testament forms with directions for a fee. Also, Office Depot or Staples sell templates.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
if he makes up this will from a template that I buy at staples, does it still have to take two witnesses in front of a notary?
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

Yes, according to Florida Statutes, a valid Will must be witnessed by two independent people in the presence of a Notary.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
well I got a template that the lady at the library gave me today. If that what a template is. It has four sides. And most of it is saying if I die, then he leaves it to this person, and then that person (4) times, Then it says he nominates who shall be represented by___ as executor of will , and it has three spaces for witnesses (is one of them me I guess?). It is a simple form, you think this sounds right to use? Or I should go to STaples? If it is right, I don't understand the questions, not sure he will either?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The rest of the will I understand, just not that part I asked you about.
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

You only need two witnesses. A witness should not be a relative or someone named in the Will as either a beneficiary or the Executor.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I was planning on letting him fill it out, he can't see very well. So I have to help him get the right form.Is there only one form at Staples, or are there many? What is it called? Is that the official, correct form. I guess I better use that one, not the one I got from the library. I hate to spend money, because there is a chance he will have to go to a nursing home and lose everything.
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

You want the form for a single adult and not the one for a married couple. It is called a Last Will & Testament.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok, what about a Will he did earlier for someone who deserted him, he needs to make sure that doesn't go through and I am on the will not that person who he says is the beneficiary at this time?
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

When you execute a new Will the old one is null and void unless the new Will is found to be invalid. So he is naming you as his beneficiary of his estate? If this is the case, then you definitely should go to an attorney because you are not a spouse, child, family member, or charity.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
oh, well that cost money, and like I said he may have to go to a nursing home. I don't have any money for a lawyer unless it's cheap, and he doesn't like spending money, even though he has it.
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

I understand, I'm just letting you know how to make sure the Will is 100% acceptable.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
That will probably cost like a $1000 at least I guess, I think I'm in trouble with this.
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

In the State of Florida judges are highly suspicious of homemade Wills where the beneficiary is not a spouse or a child. Due to the large retiree population in the state, the courts have high standards to avoid invalid Wills. Most attorneys will charge around $300 to $500 for a Will.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
well I can tell you he has no children or spouse, but he has family up north and a lot of his money is going to charity up north. I guess that could still be a problem right?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
his children and spouse died
Expert:  jb156200 replied 1 year ago.

There may never be a problem; however, if a family member wants to challenge the Will when he dies, they are more likely to be successful when it is a homemade Will versus one prepared by an Attorney.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I may be able to swing $300, it may take a long time to find one that cheap. Where do I start?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
i think your right it should be done by an attorney, his family may get involved, probably.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm afraid he's lying and he already has a will done by his family, he does lie sometimes.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Well, you have successfully talked me out of trying to do it myself I would say.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Unfortunately, I know what to do, but it I can't do it probably.

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