How to Draft You Will

It's not uncommon for people to not have a will. Nearly half of all Australians don't have one, putting it off because they don't want to consider the reality or think they have plenty of time. However, with the insurgence of COVID-19, more people are taking the time to write theirs and take care of their estate for the future.

For people that already have taken care of their will, it's likely not up-to-date. People often forget to change it once they are married, had a baby, divorced, or someone has died, which means it no longer reflects your wishes or is valid.

We get it, there is nothing pleasant about it, but it is better to be prepared, so your wishes are met. Without preparing, there is potential that your wishes will be delayed and at the monetary and emotional expense of your loved ones.

Is Using a DIY Kit Ok?'

There are many DIY Wills options because going to a lawyer may be an expense you can't afford. Depending on your ability and situation, this free option could be exactly what you need; however, you may have no choice but to get professional assistance for more complex cases.

Even if you do go with the free option, ensuring that those you love are taking care of is far too important to hope for the best. We recommend that you also gain advice from an expert to ensure no gaps or uncertainties.

Please note, regardless of how reliable your kit is, there is a risk that it hasn't been completed correctly. This is especially so if the kits aren't electronic because you won't be getting the necessary prompts to stop you from overlooking questions or sections.

Review of DIY Will Kits

Australian Seniors - Paper Will Kit

This will kit contains beneficial instruction that is simple for the older generation to navigate easily.

Cost: Free


  • Thorough explanation of relevant terms.
  • FAQ section.
  • Information regarding appointing an executor.
  • A section on the guardianship of children.
  • Recommendations for issues that require legal advice.
  • Costs nothing.


  • Although it mentions superannuation, there is no explanation of its relevance to the will.
  • Brief mention of Tax only.
  • No reference to specific clauses, which makes it difficult locating them.
  • No reference to a clause if you marry your current partner from the will being revoked. 
  • Unsuitable for multiple beneficiaries. 
  • No clause for determining the powers of executors.
  • No option for grandchildren to inherit their parents share if they are deceased.
  • Lack of designation for a witness to sign on each page.

Victorian State Trustees - Paper Will Kit

Of all we looked at, this one was easiest to read and contained a thorough background. A sample will with explanations on how to complete clauses that have the potential to reduce the possibility of errors.

Cost: $31.50


  • Thorough instructions.
  • Planning guide which is easy to read.
  • Helpful sample included.
  • Space to include a record of essential information of a personal nature, including liabilities, assets, and what you wish to do about the care of your kids and who should be contacted.
  • Clear and concise information about superannuation and the relevance it has to estate planning.
  • Sample wording about the guardianship of children.
  • Ample guidance and examples about appointing an executor.
  • Space on each page for a witness and user to sign.
  • Recommendations of what requires legal advice from a professional.


  • Lack of information about what forms a person's estate.
  • Only a brief mention of Tax.
  • Information about what revokes a will is inconsistent.
  • No recommendation that the will shouldn't be kept at home.

LawDepot - Online Will Kit

This electronic kit is printable once complete and turns the entered instruction into a completed will. The many unnecessary clauses could become confusing.

Cost: Free


  • All the information is easily accessible.
  • FAQ included.
  • A progress bar that enables you to navigate instructions for particular pages.
  • Helpful sample.
  • Has information on guardianship for children with useful advice on the process until they are of age to inherit.
  • Ample information on the choice of executor.


  • Lack of information on what forms part of your estate.
  • Unnecessary clauses.
  • No guidance on superannuation.
  • No mention of Tax.
  • Only provisions for beneficiaries first name which is bound to create confusion.
  • Nowhere to write the relationship of the beneficiaries. 
  • If you marry your current partner, there are no clauses to prevent your will from being revoked.
  • Nowhere for your funeral wishes to be included.
  • There is an unnecessary clause regarding the beneficiary not contesting the will, but the law cannot be enforced legally. 
  • Unnecessary statements are included in the attestation clause.
  • There is no advice on getting professional legal assistance when in doubt.
  • Nowhere for the user and witness to sign on each page.

LawPath - Online Will Kit

The executors are easy to navigate and is suitable for a simple will. The completed will can be printed.

Cost: Free


  • Information is easily accessible from the landing page.
  • The sample of a completed will is helpful.
  • Discusses the guardianship of children.
  • Easy to navigate the choice of executor instructions.
  • Allows you to preview the draft as your progressing.


  • There is no guidance on what forms your estate.
  • There are issues with importing the guardianship clause into the will.
  • No mention of Tax or superannuation,
  • First names entries for beneficiaries only.
  • No identification of the relationship of beneficiaries. 
  • No clause that prevents the will from being revoked if you marry your current partner.
  • No clause for determining executors powers.
  • No explanation of when legal advice is required.

LegalWill - Online Will Kit

This electronic option can be printed once complete. Most complicated out of all the kits.

Cost: $25 Singles; $40 Couples


  • Guardianship for children is dealt with and allows for alternative nomination if one isn't available.
  • Links to FAQ and general information are easy to access.
  • Has a progress bar.
  • Useful information on the choice of single or joint executor.
  • There's a designated place for a signature on each page for the user and witness.


  • Lack of guidance on what forms your estate.
  • Long and confusing instructions.
  • Brief mention only of superannuation.
  • No mention of Tax.
  • No protection of you leaving less than 100% of shares from your estate.
  • Gifts are dealt with confusingly.

How to Draft Your Will in Australia

There are some common points to keep in mind when drafting your will. However, it is essential to remember that rules vary across the sate. Consult a family law expert here about this matter.

  • Need to be 18 years old or married - Your will must be in writing and done when you are of sound mind. You also must be able to understand the implications associated with making a will.
  • Clear and Concise - Full names must be used rather than "my spouse" or "my sister."
  • The signing of the will must be witnessed by two people - Your will must be signed in your presence, on each page and with the same pen. Witnesses cannot be a beneficiary or a spouse of a beneficiary.
  • Appoint an executor - There are many time-consuming jobs the executor needs to do; appointing a substitute as a backup, such as a solicitor, will be useful.
  • When circumstances change, update your will - Be sure to update your will when you have changes such as a new relationship, divorce, having a baby, the death of a beneficiary and so on. It is recommended that you review and update your will about every three years.
  • Obtain legal advice - It is recommended that you get a lawyer to go through your will. These costs can be anywhere between $350 and $1000.
  • Ensure you keep your will in a safe place.

Issues With Creating Your Own Will

  • Debts must be honours by your estate once you pass away.
  • Superannuation isn't clearcut and can end up being at the discretion of the trustee in your fund.
  • Your will still may be contested by any disinherited family members of dependents. 

Legal Advice For Your Will - When Is It Needed?

When creating a will, there is a lot of attention to make sure your wishes are carried out and valid. Considerations to consider include:

  • Changes in marital status.
  • Balancing the needs of your partner and children.
  • Any obligations of your step-children or other non-relatives that are dependent. 
  • Taxes about estate assets.
  • Superannuation and the binding benefit nomination.
  • A gift you have given before your death.
  • Who will control a company or family trust.
  • Sentimental items to be distributed.
  • Pets.

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