Don't Let Death Be Your Deadline: Get A Will Before It's Too Late: Expand Holographic-Wills Law to Incentivize Will-Making
34 Pages Posted: 18 May 2023
Date Written: May 15, 2023
Procrastination is the number one reason for Americans’ lack of will-making. Many fail to get this important task completed before death despite acknowledging its importance. No one thing will remedy the lack of will-making in America. This Article suggests one way to address the problem is to more aggressively educate people on why a will is necessary, especially when blended families and children are part of the intestate’s family. The education efforts should target young adults in their senior year of high school and be further employed at universities, coupled with broader efforts to reach adults. Law students, in line with ABA303(a)(3), are uniquely situated to provide education to their communities and local area. Additionally, attorney-supervised law students could engage in will-making while simultaneously creating experiential learning opportunities.
Secondly, Americans need a self-help option that is readily available when needed. This minimizes concerns of the holographic will by expanding holographic-will law to include a one-page fill-in the blank statutory form. Although a professionally prepared will is ideal, there need to be other options to encourage will-making. Americans are self-sufficient and making a holographic form available when people have medical issues or travel could incentivize some to prepare a holographic form as a stepping stone towards a more complex estate plan, and serve as a placeholder to avoid intestacy in the event of the inevitable.
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