On May 15, 2015

After creating a will, one of the next important decisions you will make is where to store that will. The reason this is so important is that, if your personal representative or beneficiaries cannot locate the original copy of your will in the future, it can create significant (and unnecessary) challenges for them, costing them both financially and emotionally.

Good Places to Store a Will

An experienced Denver estate planning attorney explains where to store your will for safe keeping. Contact us for help with any estate planning needs.

An experienced Denver estate planning attorney explains where to store your will for safe keeping. Contact us for help with any estate planning needs.

When choosing a place to store your will, you will want to keep it somewhere where:

  • It will be safe.
  • It can be easily found by an executor or personal representative.

Specifically, this can include:

  • At home – If you want to keep your will in your home, be sure to store it in a waterproof, fireproof safe (and, more ideally, one that cannot be picked up/potentially be stolen). It’s not advisable to store a will in a file cabinet or somewhere else where it would be readily accessible to anyone who visits your home.
  • In a safety deposit box – This can be another secure location where you can keep your will. With safety deposit boxes, however, you should be aware that there may be laws impacting who can access your safety deposit box after you pass away. Therefore, if you do choose to keep your will here, be sure that your selected executor or personal representative has access to this safety deposit box so that (s)he can readily obtain your will later (without having to get a court order or deal with other complications).
  • With an attorney – Another good idea is to have the lawyer who helped you devise the will retain the original (or a signed copy of the original) will. In many cases, there will be little to no fees associated with having a lawyer retain your will, and you can be confident that your will will remain confidential when in your attorney’s possession.
  • With the county clerk – In some cases, it may also be possible to file the original copy of your will with the county clerk in your area. Although this may seem like the best place to keep your will, be advised that it can be complicated if you move in the future, your executor/beneficiaries live out of state, etc.

The Bottom Line about Storing Your Will

When it comes to storing your will, the bottom line is that:

  • You should choose a location that is safe and secure.
  • You should inform your executor/personal representative of where you have chosen to store your original will (and any signed copies of it).
  • You may even want to retain notes regarding where you have stored your will (in case you or an executor forgets in the future).

Denver Estate Planning Attorney at JR Phillips & Associates, PC

When you are ready to develop a will – or to move forward with any estate planning matter, you can turn to an experienced estate planning attorney at JR Phillips & Associates, PC. We provide a thoughtful, comprehensive approach to our clients’ estate planning needs, and we take pride in helping each of our clients and their families find the best solutions for them.

To discuss your estate planning needs during an initial consultation, call us at (303) 741-2400 or email us using the contact form at the top of this page.

From our offices in Denver, we serve clients throughout the southwest and southeast Metro Area, including (but not limited to) people in Highlands Ranch, Littleton, Castle Rock, Parker, Aurora, Greenwood Village and Englewood.

Categories: Estate Planning