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Estates & Wills & Trusts

Ticker: DIY legal services an estate litigator's best friend

An online platform for people to create legal documents without the assistance of a lawyer is essentially the modernized version of will kits, Toronto-area estates litigator and mediator Charles B. Ticker tells The Lawyer’s Daily.

A France-based company launched a website in Canada in early 2018, offering legal documents to customers for under $40 apiece, the legal publication reports.

Ticker, principal of Charles B. Ticker Law Office, says these types of online platforms are much like will kits — and come with the same issues.

“I always like to say that will kits are an estate litigator’s best friend. There are numerous reported decisions where we come across persons who try to create their own will using these kits, or using an online service, and they make mistakes,” Ticker says.

“They don’t address certain factors that need to be addressed, which results in disputes or uncertainty down the road.”

He adds that this can result in significant legal costs for the estate.

Ticker said ‘do-it-yourself’ wills can give people a false sense of security.

“It never ceases to amaze me that people will spend money on their homes, their cars and investments, and yet they won’t spend $500 to $1,000 to get a decent will done to protect everything they’ve worked so hard for and to protect their family. It’s the most important document that you need,” he says.

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