The 8 Best Online Will Makers of 2020
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A last will and testament is an important part of any estate plan and without one, yours might be incomplete. Writing a will allows you to decide what happens to your assets when you pass away, rather than having them distributed according to state inheritance laws. You can also use a will to name one or more legal guardians for minor children, assign someone to care for your pets, and choose an executor to handle your estate after you’re gone.
Despite the benefits a will can offer, 60-percent of American adults don’t have one, according to a Caring.com survey. Fortunately, making a will doesn’t have to be complicated and you don’t necessarily need to hire an attorney or have extensive legal expertise. The online will makers below allow you to conveniently draft a will from home and at an affordable cost.
The 8 Best Online Will Makers of 2020
- Quicken WillMaker & Trust: Best Overall
- Rocket Lawyer: Best for Frequent Changes
- Law Depot: Best for Something Simple
- LegalZoom: Best for Ease of Use
- Do Your Own Will: Best Free
- Willing: Best for Mobile Device Creation
- TotalLegal: Best for Comprehensive Legal Planning
- US Legal Wills: Best for Making Multiple Wills
Best Overall: Quicken WillMaker & Trust
Quicken’s WillMaker Plus software is a downloadable program you can use to create a legal will, along with other key estate planning, personal finance, and home and family management documents. The software allows you to draft a customized will using a simple interview format that lets you fill out forms at your own pace. You can make a will for yourself to leave property to friends, family members or charities, name guardians for your children, name an executor for your estate, or make provisions to someone you trust.
When you register your copy of WillMaker Plus, you also get access to additional estate planning documents offered by Nolo, including a revocable living trust form and an online promissory note maker. The 2019 version is available for Windows and Mac users for a one-time fee.
Best for Frequent Changes: Rocket Lawyer
Rocket Lawyer’s will maker isn’t a downloadable program; instead, it relies on a monthly subscription service model. In exchange, you can: draft a customized will, making as many revisions as you need; sign and print your will documents or invite others to review and sign the document online; add a codicil to your finalized will if necessary; create a power of attorney document; draft a living will to manage healthcare decisions if you become incapacitated; or establish a living trust.
Document Defense is included with your monthly membership. This feature allows you to tap an on-call attorney for help in preparing a legal response if your will or other documents created through Rocket Lawyer are disputed. You can also get up to a 30-minute consultation on legal matters for free. If you’re not sure about the monthly price, you can try Rocket Lawyer’s will maker free for seven days.
Best for Something Simple: Law Depot
When you need to make a more complex will, you may need a will making software with lots of extra bells and whistles. All those extras can raise the price, however. Law Depot is a will making software that’s designed to fit even the smallest of budgets. With this software, you can create, download, and print your will during the initial free seven-day trial. After that, you can continue using the software by paying a monthly subscription or skip the subscription and pay a flat fee to create and download documents.
The actual will-making process is easy; Law Depot guides you through it by having you answer questions about your marital and family status and your assets. If you’re looking to make a basic will, you can use this software to do the job in as little as five to 10 minutes. And if you need help, support is available by phone, email or live chat.
Best for Ease of Use: LegalZoom
If you’re making a will on your own, you want it to be as straightforward and simple as possible. LegalZoom’s will making software delivers on that with streamlined will creation and solid customer support. This software works using a combination of a Q&A format, in which you answer questions about your estate and open text fields where you can enter additional information about assets or heirs that the questions may not cover.
LegalZoom specialists can offer support by phone if you get stuck on any step. If you need more in-depth help, you can ask to get legal advice from one of the attorneys in the LegalZoom directory. One potential caveat: this online will maker is one of the more expensive options — even for basic planning.
Best Free: Do Your Own Will
Do Your Own Will offers a free and simple way to make a will online for budget-conscious estate planning. You don’t need an account or a credit card to make your will; you just follow a step-by-step process and answer Do Your Own Will’s questions. Those cover your marital status, whether you have children, who you want to act as your executor, and how you want specific assets to be distributed, either to individuals or to organizations. You can save your will as a PDF or Word doc, then sign and download.
Do Your Own Will provides free will software for residents of all 50 states and it truly is a 100-percent free option. (In case you’re curious, the site makes money from ad revenue.) One thing you won’t get that some of the other will makers reviewed here offer, however, is the benefit of legal support and expertise.
Best for Mobile Device Creation: Willing
Don’t have time to sit down at your desktop and make a will? That’s no problem for Willing. This will maker lets you create your will from virtually anywhere for free. You won’t pay until you print and sign your will, and pricing is comparable to some of the other will makers on our list.
Will documents are state-specific to ensure their validity. In addition to a will, you can create a host of other estate planning documents through Willing, including a living will, durable power of attorney, transfer on death deed, and revocable living trust. While this will maker doesn’t offer legal support, the site does feature a library of educational articles on estate planning and will-making, which could come in handy if you’re searching for answers to basic questions.
Best for Comprehensive Legal Planning: TotalLegal
TotalLegal offers just what its name implies: a total legal solution that covers more than just wills. For example, you can also use the site to establish a limited liability company, which is something you may be interested in if you’re starting a business or you’re looking for a way to minimize estate taxes for certain assets. Rental and lease agreement forms are available if you own a rental property. You can even draft a bill of sale or a quitclaim deed. If you just need a will, you can begin making one for free, then pay for the downloadable and printable document.
If you want to take advantage of the full suite of TotalLegal services and products, you can do so by signing up for a membership plan starting at less than $10 per month. If you go the monthly membership route, will creation is included for free.
Best for Making Multiple Wills: US Legal Wills
If your estate includes assets outside the U.S., you may need to make a separate will to handle their distribution. In addition to offering wills for domestic assets, US Legal Wills also includes will making services for assets you hold in Canada and/or the United Kingdom. There’s also a will service for expats who have assets in the U.S. Pricing for U.S. and foreign wills are the same.
You can also use this software to create a mirror will for your spouse or domestic partner at a reduced cost. Documents can be stored and updated online for one year at no additional cost. You can also opt to pay a fee to store documents for a longer than one year if needed. If you have a more complicated will, power of attorney, or living will, you can pay a separate fee to have it reviewed by a US Legal Wills attorney. If you’re not completely satisfied with any of the products you purchase, you can get a full refund within 30 days.