Senior Resources » Elder Law » How to Create an Online Will – A Step-by-Step Guide for Seniors and Retirees

How to Create an Online Will – A Step-by-Step Guide for Seniors and Retirees

let's get started online will

Are you considering creating a will but unsure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! In this easy-to-follow guide, we’ll take you through all the steps involved in creating an online will. With the convenience and affordability of online tools, preparing your will has never been simpler.


1. Research Reputable Online Will-Making Companies

grandparents smiling and using a computer

Begin by researching reputable online will-making programs. You’ll want a platform with a user-friendly interface and guidance to help you personalize your will. Here are some top options to consider:


Quicken WillMaker & Trust

  • Document quality and a user-friendly creation process make it a strong overall choice.
  • Offers step-by-step guidance and customizable options.
  • Price: $99 for the “Starter” package which includes wills and healthcare directives.


  • A popular online service for various legal needs, including will-making.
  • Provides easy-to-use templates and access to legal professionals.
  • Price: Pricing varies depending on the document you need to create. A basic last will and testament starts at $89.

Trust & Will

  • Known for its simplicity and ease of use.
  • Offers comprehensive forms and clear instructions.
  • Price: Basic wills start at $89.

Remember, these prices are average estimates and may vary depending on the complexity of your situation and the specific features you choose. It’s always a good idea to compare prices and features before making a decision!

2. Gather Necessary Information

retired couple high five

Before you start creating your online will, gather all the necessary information and documents. This includes details about your assets, beneficiaries, and any specific instructions you want to include. Having everything prepared beforehand will make the process smoother. Here’s a detailed list of the info and documents you should gather:

Details About Your Assets

  • Bank accounts: Make a list of your savings accounts, checking accounts, and any other bank accounts you hold.
  • Real estate: Include information about any properties you own, such as your primary residence, vacation homes, or rental properties.
  • Investments: List your investment accounts, including stocks, bonds, mutual funds, retirement accounts, and any other investment vehicles.


  • Identify and gather information about the individuals or organizations you wish to include as beneficiaries in your will. This can include family members, friends, charitable organizations, or other entities.
  • Gather their full names, addresses, and contact information to ensure accurate identification and smooth distribution of assets.

Specific Instructions

Think about any specific instructions you want to include in your will. These could be related to funeral arrangements, guardianship of minor children, specific bequests (such as sentimental items), or any other unique considerations you may have.

Existing Legal Documents

  • Collect any existing legal documents that may be relevant to your will. This can include previously created wills, trusts, powers of attorney, health care directives, or any other legal documents that pertain to your estate planning.

Personal Information

Have your personal information readily available, including:

  • Your full legal name
  • Date of birth
  • Social security number
  • Contact information

Identification Documents

Keep your identification documents handy, such as your driver’s license, passport, or any other government-issued identification. You may need these for verification purposes during the online will-making process.

3. Start to Fill Out the Online Form

typing on a computer

Once you’ve chosen your preferred platform and gathered all the necessary info, it’s time to fill out the online form. These forms typically ask questions about your personal information, assets, and beneficiaries. Follow the instructions provided and provide accurate details to ensure your will reflects your wishes.

4. Customize Your Will

man on computer pointing

Most online will-making programs offer options to customize your will according to your specific requirements. You can include provisions for guardianship of minor children, funeral arrangements, charitable donations, and more. Take advantage of these features to tailor your will to your exact preferences. Be aware that depending on the platform, customizations will often raise the price.

5. Review and Revise

senior woman wearing classes, sitting on couch reading on a tablet

After completing the initial draft of your online will, take the time to review it thoroughly. Double-check names, addresses, and any specific instructions. Ensure that your intentions are clearly stated and that your will accurately represents your wishes. If necessary, make revisions until you are satisfied with the final version.

6. Print, Sign, and Store Your Will

couple signing papers at a table with an advisor

Once you’ve finalized your online will, carefully follow the instructions provided by the platform to print and sign the document. Most states require at least two witnesses who are not beneficiaries to observe the signing. Have your will notarized for added validity and protection. Store your original signed will in a safe place, such as a secure filing cabinet or a safety deposit box.


When to Hire a Lawyer

55+ couple consulting

Find an elder law attorney near me.

If you have significant financial assets or a complex family situation, it’s wise to seek professional advice from an experienced lawyer to ensure all bases are covered and prevent future family conflicts. You can find reputable lawyers specializing in estate planning through resources like the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils. Costs for creating a will may range from $200 to $1,000, depending on your location and situation. To find the best value, compare quotes from different firms, and prepare for your attorney meeting by making a detailed list of your assets and accounts.

Click here to learn about estate planning.

Originally published August 24, 2023

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