In Singapore, you cannot write a valid will until you are 21. An exception to this rule applies if you are employed in such high-risk professions as mariner, soldier on active duty or seaman at sea, according to the Law Society of Singapore. A will is important because you die without leaving specific written instructions, any assets left after paying your debts will be distributed in accord with the Intestate Succession Act. The act dictates who gets what portion of your estate. (For example, if you leave a spouse and living parents, your spouse is entitled to half of your estate and your parents get the other half.) Writing a will allows you to distribute your estate as you see fit, and you can help provide for the important people and causes in your life.
Write a draft of your will. In Singapore, you don't need a lawyer to legitimize your will if you are 21 or in the aforementioned high-risk professions.
Choose executors. These are the people who will distribute your assets to the beneficiaries. Make sure to choose people you can trust to follow your instructions after you are gone.
Write, in detail, what items and money you want to leave to each person in your life (the beneficiaries). Include things like property and jewelry, not just money.
Add a section to your will explaining how your assets should be distributed if one of your beneficiaries dies before you.
Decide whether you want the beneficiary of your Central Provident Fund, a retirement benefit plan in Singagore, to receive that money. If not, change the beneficiary because the CPF nominee automatically receives that money unless you marry, in which case your spouse automatically becomes your nominee.
Have two witnesses watch you sign the will. Then have them sign as witnesses. They cannot be beneficiaries of your will, nor can either be your spouse.
See a lawyer even though it isn't required. Homemade wills are often challenged and do not carry the legitimacy of wills made with a lawyer's help. Getting help to legitimize your will can ensure that your instructions are carried out correctly and without argument.
- Change your will if you change your name, get married, acquire more property or money, lose a beneficiary, or have another large change in circumstances.
- Do not cross out portions of the old will, as this will invalidate the will. Instead, write an entirely new copy and get it witnessed once again.
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