How Much Does A Will Cost? (With and Without an Attorney)

The cost of a will varies widely. Making a will doesn’t have to be expensive, and there are affordable options available.

How much does a Will cost?

If you are thinking of making a Will, you are probably wondering how much does a Will cost. The fact is that the price of a Will varies widely. But making a Will doesn’t have to be expensive, and there are affordable options available to many people.

An attorney-prepared Will tends to cost more than an Online Will. We’ll give you the breakdown below.

When comparing the cost of a Will, remember to keep the big picture in mind. Planning your estate is one of the most important things you can do to protect your loved ones. The cost of a Will is certainly a consideration but should be secondary to your overall goal of protecting your family.

You have three options for preparing a Will:

  1. Do it yourself with a Handwritten Will or a Will kit
  2. Prepare an Online Will
  3. Hire an attorney (usually the most expensive solution)

How much does a Will kit cost?

You may opt to prepare a handwritten will, which is free. Be careful with handwritten Wills as they tend to be more prone to dispute and states have different requirements. Also, if any asset is omitted from a handwritten then the “government’s estate plan” will determine what happens to those assets, which is usually not a good thing.

You can purchase estate planning forms from a retail outlet, such as an office supply store. Be careful with any will form obtained from a kit to ensure the will form is valid in your state (check the fine print), and closely follow signing instructions. Will kits are generally very cheap – usually less than $50.

In real terms, handwritten Wills and Will kits are dangerous because of the risk of running afoul of applicable state law which renders the Will legally invalid. The number of witnesses, notarization requirements, formalities of the signing, required declarations of the Will maker, all vary from state to state. One small mistake can send you back to the point where you had no estate plan at all.

How much does a lawyer charge for making a Will?

You don’t necessarily need a lawyer to make a Will, but many people obtain the legal help of a wills lawyer to help ensure their estate plan is accurate, complete, and clear. The question of how much does a lawyer charge for a Will depends on many factors, including geography. Attorney fees are higher in certain parts of the country. Also, added complexity increases the amount of time an attorney must dedicate to preparing a Will, as well as the price of a Will.

If you need professional guidance, an experienced estate planning lawyer can certainly prepare a Will for you. In real terms, you may find an attorney that will prepare a simple will for a nominal fee (roughly $150), or even free. On the other end of the spectrum, an attorney may charge thousands of dollars for a complex Will with testamentary trusts and tax-sensitive provisions.

How much does it cost to make an Online Will?

You can also find estate planning platforms online where you can go step-by-step guide through a process for making a will. The cost is quite reasonable. You can start right now with GeauxPlans!

Our mission at GeauxPlans is to make the estate planning journey simple while delivering both content and value. We may be biased, but our team and process are top-notch. Unlike other estate planning platforms, GeauxPlans is owned and administered by an estate planning law firm.

Create your Will through GeauxPlans – starting at $199.

Essential estate planning documents included in the Will-Based Estate Plan are the following:

Last Will and Testament

The centerpiece of your estate plan dictates your final wishes for the disposition of assets and arrangements.

Appoint someone you know and trust to manage assets and make financial decisions for you if you become incapacitated or are unavailable.

Appoint someone you know and trust to make medical decisions for you if you become incapacitated or are unavailable.

State your wishes in advance regarding what types of medical life support measures you prefer if cannot express your preferences yourself.

Authorize someone to access your Protected Health Information for quick assistance or decisions if you become incapacitated.

If you have children who are minors, check out our Minor Child-Centered Estate Plan – starting at $199, which includes all essential estate planning documents and a Will to appoint a tutor or guardian of your minor child.

GeauxPlans is also backed by a Triple Guaranty, so you can test drive your GeauxPlan for an entire year!

Since the cost of preparing a will varies so widely, it can be hard to decide what exactly you should do to prepare a Will properly.

Not sure where to start?

Tell us about yourself and we'll match you with the right plan!
#1 Choose Your State

If you spend time in more than one state, use the state where you are registered to vote, or maintain a driver's license, or intend to return if you are temporarily residing in another state.

#2 Are you married?
#3 Do you want to plan for what happens when you die?

You get to decide who's in control after you die, who gets your assets, and when, as well as who cares for children, etc.

#4 Do you own any real estate in the state of Louisiana?
#5 OK, so probate will be required in Louisiana. It's a bit more work, but do you want to avoid the probate process by transferring your assets to a Living Trust?

GeauxPlans can walk you through the process - step by step.

#5 Do you own probate assets worth more than $125,000?

Probate assets include property that passes by beneficiary designation or that isn't already in a trust. Put another way, probate assets do not include life insurance or annuity proceeds (unless your estate is the beneficiary), retirement assets, usufruct or life estate property, and other assets with named beneficiaries, such pay on death accounts.

#6 Do you have any minor children?

Include both biological and legally adopted children.

How Much Does A Will Cost? (With and Without an Attorney)
How Much Does A Will Cost? (With and Without an Attorney)
How Much Does A Will Cost? (With and Without an Attorney)
#4 If you lose capacity, do you want someone you trust to make financial or healthcare decisions for you?

Incapacity can result from any of the following:

  • Accidents
  • Injuries
  • Medical conditions
  • Degenerative diseases
  • Anything that can cause you from acting on your own behalf, whether temporarily or permanently

If something happens to you, someone should be able to make medical and financial decisions for you, like taking care of bills and other financial obligations, consenting to medical procedures, making care arrangements, and accessing proctected health information.

How Much Does A Will Cost? (With and Without an Attorney)
#5 Do you need authority to make financial or medical decisions for another person?

For example, a college student who is no longer a minor, or an elderly person (perhaps a parent) may need assistance with financial or medical decisions.

#6 Do you seek privacy or improved control of your assets during life?

For example, do you wish to:

  • Minimize or avoid any public record or information about personal assets?
  • Shield any public information from creditors or predators?
  • Keep assets segregated as separate property in the event of a second marriage?
#7 It sounds like you need some advice.

GeauxPlans is owned and administered by an estate planning law firm. If you have questions or would like a complimentary consultation, please submit your inquiry.

If you have additional questions about making a Will or estate planning in general, reach out to our support team. We stand ready to help you navigate the process of making a Will with confidence and ease.

Do you have any questions?

Support team: M-F, 8am-5pm CST
Call us: +1 (855) 213-6300