Will Writing: Safeguarding Your Legacy

The topic of will writing often gets pushed aside amidst the hustle and bustle of daily life. Yet, its significance cannot be overstated. A will is not merely a document outlining how your assets are distributed after your passing; it is a cornerstone of responsible estate planning (click here to get more information about estate planning) and a crucial tool for safeguarding your legacy.

What is a will?

A will is a legal document that allows an individual (the testator) to dictate how their assets and possessions should be distributed after their death. It typically includes instructions regarding beneficiaries, guardianship of minor children, and the appointment of an executor to manage the estate. It is a must-have tool in estate planning.

Functions of a will

1. Minimizing conflicts and legal complications

One of the primary reasons for drafting a will is to ensure that your loved ones are taken care of according to your wishes. Without a will, the distribution of your assets will be subject to intestacy laws, which may not align with your intentions. This can lead to disputes among family members and prolonged legal battles, adding unnecessary stress during an already difficult time. By clearly outlining who should inherit your assets, you provide clarity and peace of mind to your beneficiaries. Whether it is your spouse, children, or other family members, a well-crafted will ensures that they are provided for according to your wishes.

2. Ensuring business continuity

For business owners, a will is especially critical. Without a clear succession plan in place, the future of the business may be uncertain in the event of the owner’s death. A well-drafted will can specify who will inherit and manage the business, ensuring its continuity and protecting the livelihoods of employees and stakeholders.

3. Choosing guardians for minor children

For parents with minor children, a will is essential for appointing guardians who will care for their children in the event of their untimely passing. Without a will, the court will decide who becomes the guardian, which may not align with your preferences. By naming guardians in your will, you retain control over who will raise your children and provide them with a stable environment.

Characteristics of a valid will

1. Testator’s capacity: The testator must be of sound mind and legal age (18 years old or above) to create a will.

2. Intent: The testator must have the intention to create a will and dispose of his/her property upon death.

3. In Writing: The will must be in writing, either handwritten or typed.

4. Signature: The testator must sign the will at the end of the document.

5. Witnesses: The will must be witnessed by at least two competent witnesses who are present at the same time when the testator signs. Witnesses must also sign the will in the presence of the testator and each other. The witnesses cannot be beneficiaries of the will.

6. Executor: The testator should appoint an executor, who is responsible for carrying out the instructions in the will and administering the estate.

7. Clear Instructions: The will should clearly state how the testator’s assets and possessions are to be distributed among beneficiaries. It should also address any other relevant matters, such as guardianship of minor children.

8. Revocation Clause: The testator may include a clause explicitly revoking any previous wills or codicils they have made. Nonetheless, a subsequent will would automatically revoke an earlier one, even without this revocation clause.

Revocation of the will

There are four main circumstances that revoke a will:

1. Marriage: A will is revoked through marriage or remarriage. Divorce or separation does not revoke a will.

2. Destruction: Physical destruction of a will by the testator with the intention of revoking it constitutes revocation. However, accidental or malicious destruction by a third party does not revoke a will.

3. A later will: A subsequent will would automatically revoke an earlier one, even without a revocation clause.

4. Conversion to Islam: Distribution of a Muslim estate follows the Faraid distribution.


Ultimately, the importance of will writing boils down to peace of mind. Knowing that your wishes will be carried out and your loved ones provided for can offer immense comfort during life’s uncertainties. By taking the time to draft a will, you are not only protecting your assets but also safeguarding your legacy for future generations.

Given the complexities of estate planning, consulting with professionals is highly recommended. You need personalised advice based on individual circumstances and to ensure that estate planning documents are legally enforceable. Do not delay — take the necessary steps to secure your legacy today.

How can a financial planner help you?

I will work with you to plan your estate, including will writing. We will establish your wishes and select the appropriate tools to ensure your assets will be distributed according to your wishes. Furthermore, we will find ways to make sure that your liabilities will be cleared off in the event of your demise and your assets can safely pass on to your intended recipients.

Once the process is complete, it does not mean that the will or instructions cannot be changed. If your circumstances change, we can always review your estate plan and amend it according to your wish. Do not hesitate to let me know when the situation arises.

If you are interested in working with me to plan for your estate, just leave your details by clicking the button below. I will reach out to you and see if we would be a good fit for each other.

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Disclaimer: This post is for informational purpose only. You should use judgment and conduct due diligence before taking any action or implementing any plan suggested or recommended in this article.


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