Why Should You Make a Will?

Last updated on April 15, 2019

The word ‘will’ often connotes death and one’s last words. Some of us think that making a will is threateningly inauspicious. Others, who are much more optimistic, prefer not to think about it at all.

Either way, all of us must confront death eventually and we want to ensure that the loved ones we leave behind are well provided for even in our absence. Hence, it is both important and necessary to make a will.

Here are 5 key reasons why you should do so:

1. You Decide How Your Estate is Distributed

A will ensures that your assets, such as the properties you own, your CPF monies and stock and shares, are handed over to your loved ones according to your wishes. Without a will, your estate will be distributed according to the Intestate Succession Act.

For example, if a man passes away and leaves behind a surviving spouse but has no children and his parents are deceased, the spouse will be entitled to the entire estate. He may have wanted a close friend to inherit some portion of the estate, but since he did not make a will, his friend will not be allowed to make any claims to his estate.

With a will, you can choose how your assets are to be distributed after your death.

2. You can Appoint a Guardian to Look after Your Children

Our children are the source of our greatest joys and worries. You would want to have someone you trust to take care of your children when you are not around for them.

Sometimes, the guardian appointed by the Court may not be the person you believe to be capable enough of bringing up your children. For example, the Court may appoint the deceased’s brother as legal guardian of the children when he or she would have entrusted the children to his or her sister instead. You may wish to learn more about appointing a guardian for your children in your will

3. You can Appoint Your Personal Representatives and Give Them the Power to Act according to Your Wishes

We work hard to achieve what we have in our lives. We want someone we trust to take charge of our estates and distribute them according to our wishes.

A personal representative serves as the executor of the will, and is responsible for ensuring that your beneficiaries receive what they are entitled to.

Without a will, your personal representatives will be appointed by law (usually the next-of-kin, husband or widow of the deceased) and they might not be the best people to carry out your wishes.

4. You can Choose your Funeral Arrangements

A will ensures that your decision to be cremated or buried is respected. Some of us may prefer one practice over another for personal reasons or religious beliefs.

For instance, most Hindus prefer cremation as it symbolises the end of the existence of the physical body and a new beginning for the soul.

You may also wish to refer to our article on death procedures and funeral espenses.

5. You Ease Your Family Members’ Pain during this Difficult Time

One of the hardest moments in our lives is experiencing the loss of a loved one. Having a will minimises the possibility of disputes arising amongst your family members, allowing them to mourn their loss in peace without having to negotiate back and forth with lawyers.

For more information, you may wish to download our free guide to will-making here:

Many Singaporeans put off will-making, as well as other forms of estate planning, as these may involve dark and gloomy (and possibly also even morbid) thoughts. However, making a will is actually a selfless act.

This is because by considering the interests of your loved ones even in your last moments, you ensure that your legacy lives on in the hearts of those you love.

If you would like to write a will, you may contact one of our wills lawyers and obtain a quotation from them. You can also use our WillMaker service to make a will online.

Estate Planning
  1. Plan Intergenerational Wealth With a Singapore Family Office
  2. 8 Tools You Must Know for Estate Planning in Singapore
  3. Guide to CPF Nominations & How to Make One In Singapore
  4. What Happens to Your Debts When You Die?
  5. Who Pays for the Mortgage Debts and Medical Bills After Death?
  6. Is Inheritance Tax Payable When You Die in Singapore?
  7. Is Stamp Duty Payable When Inheriting Property in Singapore?
  8. How to Donate your Assets to Charity
  9. Organ Donation in Singapore (under HOTA, or For Science)
  10. Finding Missing Persons in Singapore (or ‘Presumed Dead’)
Making a Will
  1. How Do I Make a Will?
  2. The Complete Guide to Making Your Will in Singapore
  3. Why Should You Make a Will?
  4. Checklist for Drafting a Comprehensive Will in Singapore
  5. Get An Affordable Will Made By Experienced Lawyers
  6. Choosing an Executor for Your Will in Singapore
  7. How to Prepare a Schedule of Assets for Your Will in Singapore
  8. Appointing a Guardian for Your Children in Your Will in Singapore
  9. What is a Mutual Will, Mirror Will and Joint Will?
  10. How to Give Away Overseas Assets in a Will in Singapore
  11. Can I Use My Will to Distribute Insurance Proceeds?
  12. Where Should You Store Your Will?
  13. How Can I Change My Will?
Preparing for Incapacity
  1. How to Plan for Mental Incapacitation
  2. Mental Capacity Assessment for LPAs and Wills
  3. Appointment of Deputies under the Mental Capacity Act
  4. How to Appoint a Deputy for Mentally Incapacitated Persons in Singapore
  5. Advance Medical Directives in Singapore
  6. Making a Lasting Power of Attorney in Singapore
  7. Revocation of a Lasting Power of Attorney
  8. Advance Care Planning in Singapore: Why and How to Get Started
Setting Up a Trust
  1. What is a Trust? Trust Law in Singapore
  2. Fiduciaries and Fiduciary Law in Singapore
  3. Setting Up a Discretionary Living Trust in Singapore
  4. Trust Protectors: Who are They & How to Appoint One in Singapore
Grant of Probate and Grant of Letters of Administration
  1. No Executor For Your Loved One's Will: What to Do
  2. What is Probate? Is It Needed If Your Loved One Passes Away?
  3. Can the Public Trustee Administer Your Loved One's Estate?
  4. Managing a Loved One's Estate After Their Death in Singapore
  5. Applying for a Grant of Probate in Singapore
  6. Intestacy: Applying for Letters of Administration in Singapore
  7. Obtaining a Fresh Grant of Probate and Resealing a Foreign Grant of Probate
  8. Comprehensive Guide to Probate Fees in Singapore
Distribution of Estate Assets
  1. Dispute with Executor of Will in Singapore: What to Do
  2. Bona Vacantia: Dying With No Will or Relatives in Singapore
  3. What Happens If You Die Without a Will in Singapore?
  4. An Executor’s Checklist to Executing a Will in Singapore
  5. What to Do If the Will Cannot be Found
  6. How to Contest a Will in Singapore (Grounds and Procedure)
  7. What Happens to the HDB Flat When One Owner Dies?
  8. How to Access the Bank Account of a Deceased Spouse
  9. What Happens to the Car When the Owner Passes Away?
  10. Simultaneous Death: How are Assets Distributed When Family Members Die at the Same Time?
  11. Can a half-brother be considered a next of kin? (when distributing the assets of the deceased)
  12. What happens to property when a deceased’s next-of-kin or named personal representative is uncontactable?
  13. What happens to residuary property not accounted for?
  14. What happens to a Singapore expatriate's assets when he passes on?
  15. What If a Beneficiary Dies Before Receiving His Inheritance?
  16. How Can Your Minor Beneficiaries Receive Their Inheritance?
  17. Unfair Maintenance: What Can Singapore's Law Do for You?
Muslim Inheritance Law
  1. Using Hibah for Muslim Estate Planning in Singapore
  2. Can Muslims Make Nuzriah (or Nazar) in Singapore and How?
  3. Muslim Inheritance Law in Singapore