How Do I Make a Will?

Last updated on June 20, 2019

In Singapore, wills are governed by the Wills Act, which states that a testator may devise, bequeath or dispose of his real or personal estate, via a will.

Formalities of a Will

The requirements for a valid will in Singapore are:

  1. The will must be committed to writing.
  2. The testator must be at least 21 years old.
  3. The testator must sign the will at the foot of the will.
  4. The testator’s signature must be witnessed by 2 or more witnesses, who must also sign the will in his presence.
  5. The 2 main witnesses cannot be beneficiaries of the will, or spouses of beneficiaries.

(1) Will must be made in writing; (2) Testator must be at least 21 years old; (3) Testator must sign at foot of will in front of 2 witnesses; (4) 2 main witnesses cannot be beneficiaries of the will

If the testator is unable to sign at the foot of his will, he may allow another person to sign it on his behalf and in his presence. In addition, witnesses apart from the 2 main witnesses can also be beneficiaries.

What to Include in a Will

  1. A list of all of your assets. A jointly-owned bank account or house cannot be devised by a will.
  2. A list of all your liabilities. You must state how you want your debts to be paid off before your assets are distributed to the beneficiaries.
  3. The beneficiaries (who to give the assets to) and guardians (for if the beneficiaries are too young), and how much each one is to receive. You may also want to include reserve (i.e. backup) beneficiaries in the event of simultaneous death.
  4. The executors (to carry out your will). A beneficiary may also be the executor.
  5. The advisors. For example, lawyers and accountants.
  6. A revocation clause to revoke any and all previous wills.
  7. A residuary clause that distributes any remainder of your estate according to your wishes. For example, if a beneficiary dies before you, the asset bequeathed to him becomes the remainder.

For more information, refer to our checklist for drafting a comprehensive will.

Will Central Provident Fund (CPF) monies be covered by your will?

As CPF savings are not covered under your will, you must make a CPF nomination if you want your CPF savings to be distributed according to your wishes upon your passing. Each nominee will receive a proportion as specified in your nomination.

Otherwise, your CPF savings will be transferred to the Public Trustee’s Office and distributed according to the rules in the Intestate Succession Act.

Cost of Making a Will in Singapore

In Singapore, it generally costs between $200 to $400 to engage a lawyer to draft a simple will. If your will is more complex (for example, if you have overseas assets to will away), your will may cost $500 and up.

Do You Need a Lawyer to Draft a Will?

You do not strictly need a lawyer to write a will. However, it is best to engage a wills lawyer if your requirements on who should inherit your assets are rather complex.

There are also will-writing services offered by non-lawyers. It is not true that these services will definitely be priced lower than lawyer services. Given the competitive legal market now, it is possible to engage a lawyer to write a will for approximately the same price as other will-writing services.

We also offer a WillMaker service for individuals to conveniently make a will online by themselves for $89 per will. This flat fee includes unlimited edits and downloads of the will document for 1 month.

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  2. Muslim Inheritance Law in Singapore
  3. What Happens to Your Debts When You Die?
  4. How to Donate your Assets to Charity
  5. Organ Donation in Singapore (under HOTA, or For Science)
  6. Can I Use My Will to Distribute Insurance Proceeds?
  7. 8 Tools You Must Know for Estate Planning in Singapore
  8. Who Pays for the Mortgage Debts and Medical Bills After Death?
  9. Complete Guide to CPF Nominations and How to Make One in Singapore
  10. Is Inheritance Tax Payable When You Die in Singapore?
  11. Missing Persons Singapore: Legal Steps to Find and 'Presumed Dead'
Making a Will
  1. How Do I Make a Will?
  2. Choosing an Executor for Your Will in Singapore
  3. Get An Affordable Will Made By Experienced Lawyers
  4. Where Should You Store Your Will?
  5. Why Should You Make a Will?
  6. What is a Mutual Will, Mirror Will and Joint Will?
  7. How Can I Change My Will?
  8. Checklist for Drafting a Comprehensive Will in Singapore
  9. Appointing a Guardian for Your Children in Your Will in Singapore
  10. The Complete Guide to Making Your Will in Singapore
Preparing for Incapacity
  1. How to Plan for Mental Incapacitation
  2. What is a Lasting Power of Attorney and How to Make One in Singapore
  3. Advance Medical Directives in Singapore
  4. Appointment of Deputies under the Mental Capacity Act
  5. Revocation of a Lasting Power of Attorney
  6. How to Appoint a Deputy for Mentally Incapacitated Persons in Singapore
  7. Advance Care Planning in Singapore: Why and How to Get Started
  8. Mental Capacity Assessment for LPAs and Wills
Setting Up a Trust
  1. What is a Trust? Trust Law in Singapore
  2. Setting Up a Discretionary Living Trust in Singapore
Distribution of Estate Assets
  1. An Executor’s Checklist to Executing a Will in Singapore
  2. What Happens If You Die Without a Will in Singapore?
  3. How Do I Contest a Will?
  4. Wills, Probate, and Executors: What to Do When a Loved One Passes Away in Singapore
  5. Applying for Letters of Administration: Singapore's Intestacy Laws
  6. Unfair Maintenance: What Can Singapore's Law Do for You?
  7. Applying for a Grant of Probate in Singapore
  8. Can a half-brother be considered a next of kin? (when distributing the assets of the deceased)
  9. What happens to property when a deceased’s next-of-kin or named personal representative is uncontactable?
  10. Obtaining a Fresh Grant of Probate and Resealing a Foreign Grant of Probate
  11. What happens to residuary property not accounted for?
  12. What happens to a Singapore expatriate's assets when he passes on?
  13. How to Access the Bank Account of a Deceased Spouse
  14. What happens to my assets overseas when I pass on?
  15. What Happens to the HDB Flat When One Owner Passes Away?
  16. Simultaneous Death: How are Assets Distributed When Family Members Die at the Same Time?
  17. What to Do If the Will Cannot be Found
  18. What to Do If There are Disputes With or Between the Executors of a Will in Singapore
  19. What If a Beneficiary Dies Before Receiving His Inheritance?
  20. What Happens to the Car When the Owner Passes Away?
  21. How Can Your Minor Beneficiaries Receive Their Inheritance?