Will writing


Questions about Will writing

  • Is it necessary to have a will?

    It is always a wise move to have a well-thought out will. The three common advantages are:

    • You can decide on how your assets will be distributed after your death. Without a will, your assets may not be given to your choice of beneficiaries. This may lead to serious disputes and disharmony among loved ones.

    • You can appoint the right executors and trustees whom you know and trust. Executors and trustees will help to manage your assets and estate affairs after you pass on. This includes distributing assets according to your instructions and paying your debts and liabilities (using your assets).

    • You can appoint a guardian to take care of your children who are below 21 years old. If you have children, it’s important to make sure that they’re always protected and cared for.

    A will is your act of love for your loved ones. It helps expedite settlement of your estate and avoids unforeseen complications while they are in grief.

  • How will my estate be distributed if I do not have a will?
    • Rule 1

      If an intestate dies leaving a surviving spouse, no issue and no parent, the spouse shall be entitled to the whole of the estate.

    • Rule 2

      If an intestate dies leaving a surviving spouse and issue, the spouse shall be entitled to one-half of the estate.

    • Rule 3

      Subject to the rights of the surviving spouse, if any, the estate (both as to the undistributed portion and the reversionary interest) of an intestate who leaves issue shall be distributed by equal portions per stirpes to and amongst the children of the person dying intestate and such persons as legally represent those children, in case any of those children be then dead.

      • Proviso No. (1) — The persons who legally represent the children of an intestate are their descendants and not their next‑of‑kin.

      • Proviso No. (2) — Descendants of the intestate to the remotest degree stand in the place of their parent or other ancestor, and take according to their stocks the share which he or she would have taken.

    • Rule 4

      If an intestate dies leaving a surviving spouse and no issue but a parent or parents, the spouse shall be entitled to one-half of the estate and the parent or parents to the other half of the estate.

    • Rule 5

      If there are no descendants, the parent or parents of the intestate shall take the estate, in equal portions if there be 2 parents, subject to the rights of the surviving spouse (if any) as provided in rule 4.

    • Rule 6

      If there are no surviving spouse, descendants or parents, the brothers and sisters and children of deceased brothers or sisters of the intestate shall share the estate in equal portions between the brothers and sisters and the children of any deceased brother or sister shall take according to their stocks the share which the deceased brother or sister would have taken.

    • Rule 7

      If there are no surviving spouse, descendants, parents, brothers and sisters or children of such brothers and sisters but grandparents of the intestate, the grandparents shall take the whole of the estate in equal portions.

    • Rule 8

      If there are no surviving spouse, descendants, parents, brothers and sisters or their children or grandparents but uncles and aunts of the intestate, the uncles and aunts shall take the whole of the estate in equal portions.

    • Rule 9

      In default of distribution under rules 1 to 8, the Government shall be entitled to the whole of the estate.

  • How do I qualify to write a will?

    You need to be at least 21 years old and of sound mind to write a will. There is no need for your will to be drafted, approved or witnessed by a lawyer as long as your will fulfils the legal requirements.

    To be of a sound mind or have the testamentary capacity:

    • You should understand the nature of the act and what the consequences are;

    • You know and approve the contents of the will, nature and extent of properties;

    • You know who your beneficiaries are and can appreciate their claims on your properties; and

    • You are free from an abnormal state of mind that might distort feelings or judgements relevant to making the will.

  • Is Goodwill’s will writing service suitable for me?

    We designed this will-writing service to be easy and hassle-free to benefit as many people as possible. As most people do not have overseas assets and their distribution wishes are relatively simple, the simple will offered by Goodwill may be sufficient for you. If you have the following needs, you may wish to seek legal advise: 

    In Goodwill’s will writing process, we will guide you in identifying your beneficiaries and the proportion of estate you intend to distribute, as well as guardians (if you have a young child), executors and trustees. For more advanced needs, you may wish to seek legal advice.

  • What if I require an Islamic will?

    Muslim wills must adhere to Faraid guidelines. Unfortunately, we are not able to provide this service, but can direct you to relevant resources. Please send an email to priya@makegoodwill.com with your requirements.

  • How do I create my will?

    All you have to do is go through a simple step-by-step process and answer our questions. We will do the magic!

  • How do I execute my will?

    you have to do is print it out and sign off at the end of the Will and at the bottom of every page and have your witnesses sign the same as well.

    Beneficiaries under the will and their spouses are prohibited from signing as witnesses.

    Remember, you must ensure that all signatures are witnessed in person by all parties (ie your two witnesses and yourself must all sign in the presence of one another at one sitting). Date the will immediately thereafter.

    You will then have a valid will!

  • When does my will take effect?

    Your will only takes effect upon death; only then will the distributions to a beneficiary take place.

  • What defines my property in my will?

    The property to be disposed of in the estate in the will is the property which exists at the time of death and not the property at the date when you execute your will.

  • What assets cannot be distributed via my will?

    The following assets cannot be distributed via a will:

    • CPF balances will be distributed according to your CPF Nomination if you have made one. If you do not make a CPF nomination, your money will be paid to the Public Trustee in Singapore, who will pay it out in accordance with the Intestate Succession Act. Read more on the CPF website and download the form here https://www.cpf.gov.sg/Members/Schemes/schemes/other-matters/cpf-nomination-scheme

    • Proceeds of insurance policies will go to the beneficiaries nominated in the insurance policies. If you do not make a nomination, the proceeds will form part of your estate to be distributed according to your will or if no will is done, it will be distributed in accordance with the Intestate Succession Act.

    • Property under Joint Tenancy – the property will be passed over to the survivor joint tenant. For example, if you own a property as joint tenants with your spouse, in the event that you pass on, your spouse will inherit the property wholly. For real-estate properties that are held as joint tenants, these properties cannot be passed on through the operation of a will.

    • Generally-speaking, the assets in joint-bank accounts and joint-stock brokerage accounts would also be payable to the surviving account holder. However, due to different clauses with regards to these accounts, in some cases, these assets may form part of the estate to be distributed according to your will or the Intestate Succession Act.

  • What happens to my previous wills?

    You should review your will from time to time to make sure it remains current and viable. These are situations where you should review and amend your will if necessary:

    • change in distribution wishes

    • change or death of any of beneficiaries, guardian, executor, trustee

    • marriage or re-marriage – these events will revoke your earlier will you have made

    • change in personal circumstances such as addition of new family member, or divorce

    Be aware that you cannot alter your will by simply crossing something out or adding something new. In fact, making a handwritten change could invalidate your entire will.

  • Can I customize my will from Goodwill?

    Unfortunately, no.

    Our will-writing service is an automated one. It only caters to a select few situations and pre-set inheritance options. These are generally the more common scenarios and/or choices for most people.

  • How do I safekeep my will?

    You will need to store your original signed hardcopy will in a safe and secure place. You need to decide whom you would like your will to be disclosed to. This person or persons must be informed of the location of the will and be able to access it when the need arises. One good place is to keep it together with your insurance policies. Putting it in locked storage may pose problems when the keys are lost. As of now, digital copies and digital signatures of wills are not acceptable in the court of law.

  • When should I revise my will?

    You should review your will from time to time to make sure it remains current and viable. These are situations where you should review and amend your will if necessary:

    • change in distribution wishes

    • change or death of any of beneficiaries, guardian, executor, trustee

    • marriage or re-marriage – these events will revoke your earlier will you have made.

    • change in personal circumstances such as addition of new family member, or divorce

    Be aware that you cannot alter your will by simply crossing something out or adding something new. In fact, making a handwritten change could invalidate your entire will.

  • What should I do besides having a will?

    CPF nomination – you can read more from CPF website and download the form here. https://www.cpf.gov.sg/Members/Schemes/schemes/other-matters/cpf-nomination-scheme

    Schedule of assets – this is a list of assets that you have, eg, property, bank accounts, investment, overseas assets.