For When a Will Can’t Protect Your After-Life Wishes
Imagine receiving a mobile notification that you’re about to be eviscerated by a nuke.
That’s what we experienced in Honolulu the morning of January 13, 2018. Many thoughts race through one’s mind: in my case, “Oh crap, we just finished Dad’s will… and there’s no back up copy out of state!”
When Safe Boxes Can’t Protect Wills
In that moment, it became apparent that safe deposit boxes and fire safes don’t necessarily protect your Last Will & Testament. Nuclear incidents, volcanic eruptions, hurricanes, tsunamis, tornados, large fires and other natural disasters can wipe out everything, including your Will. And if your Will is lost, your wishes could go up in smoke and your assets could be lost forever.
Fortunately, the notification was a mistake. So after laundering my pants, I contacted our attorney to inquire on his back up plan. He didn’t have one. Our documents are in his files waiting to be lit up with the rest of our City when the nuke hits. He did however recommend searching online for a back up solution.
If a Will is Lost, It’s Presumed to Be Revoked
Online search results reveal that in the eyes of the law, if a Will can’t be presented, it’s presumed to be revoked. In such event, probate courts apply pre-defined intestate law that distributes equal shares to next-of-kin. The effect of this is that any unequal or gifts to others beyond direct off-spring will be disallowed.
Original Wills: Unequal Bequests Breed Fraud & Disputes
Wills govern the distribution of one’s life assets, so they’re often worth challenging and can be a magnet for fraud. In fact, any next-of-kin due to receive a lesser-than-equal bequest has an incentive to find and destroy a Will to force equal distribution by intestate succession. On this point, some 35% of all Wills in the United States have unequal bequests among beneficiaries. Further, 20% of all Wills have bequests for pets. Net result: if a Will is missing, a Testator’s special gifts and wishes will be entirely disregarded in favor of intestate distribution.
Copies of Wills: Proof of Authenticity & Intent Required
And on the point of using a back up copy, most States presume that the Original Will was intentionally destroyed by the Testator and that a Copy of Will by itself isn’t a valid replacement for an Original. A Copy of Will may be presented for application, however strong evidentiary proof is required to both substantiate the validity of the Copy and prove that the Testator intended the Copy to be a valid copy of the Original.
WillDriver: True Protection for After-Life Wishes
Enter business partners Steve Sue, Tim Caminos and Riz Rahman, who are also executors of their respective family affairs. They agreed there was a huge hole in the market that needed patching. So we invented an authentication service coupled with cloud-based storage that provides evidentiary support to authenticate controlling versions of Originals and Copies of Wills. With WillDriver, we believe that our family legacies are now better protected and we hope that your family’s legacy is too. As you use it, if any big ideas pop up, please Contact Us »