What Is an Ethical Will?

Locate a Local Family Lawyer

Find Lawyers in Other Categories
Most Common Family Law Issues:

What Is an Ethical Will?

An ethical will is a non-legal document that transmits your last intentions and thoughts to your family. This type of document often tells life lessons and gives moral advice.

People also may include details about family members should distribute property and tie up legal affairs. However, since an ethical will is not a legal document, if your kin do not follow it, there is nothing a court of law can do.

What Should Be Included in an Ethical Will?

Most people include non-legal items in an ethical will. In other words, they use it to leave behind their story and not their possessions. Thus, an ethical will should include:

Although you technically can put your wishes as to how your possession should be bequeathed in this document, it is not recommended.

Types of Ethical Will

An ethical will can take in many different forms. It is up to the creator. It could be in the form of a book, a letter, a video, or even a greeting card. The important thing to consider is whether the medium will stand the test of time as certain technologies may be phased out in the future.

Keeping the Ethical Will Safe

Ethical wills can be given to your loved ones after it has been created or at a later time. If you decide to hold on to it, you should keep your ethical will with other important documents so your loved ones will be able to find it.

Consulting a Lawyer

As stated above, ethical wills do not provide any legal protections. You don’t need a lawyer to create an ethical will. However, to create a legal documents such as wills and trusts, you should consult with an estate lawyer.

Consult a Lawyer - Present Your Case Now!
Last Modified: 01-07-2015 03:05 PM PST

Find the Right Lawyer Now

Link to this page

Law Library Disclaimer

LegalMatch Service Mark