If We Want to Make Changes to Our Will, Do We Have to Use the Same Attorney Who Drafted It?

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My wife and I drafted our wills with an attorney when our two children were young. We would now like to make some minor tweaks to the will. The attorney who drafted it kept a copy, and we have the original. However, we didn’t like the attorney and thought he acted unprofessionally. Do my wife and I need to contact that previous attorney to request he return or destroy the original document or can we simply have a new lawyer update our will and invalidate the old one?


There is no reason to go back to the old attorney. Your new documents simply supersede the old ones. In your case, you have the original documents. In some instances, the attorney holds them. If that were the case, it would be helpful to the original attorney to let him know after you execute your new estate plan so that he doesn’t have to keep the old estate planning documents secure. Most law offices have several fireproof safes stuffed with estate planning instruments, some of them for people the office hasn’t interacted with in decades. The law office could use the additional space.

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This article was reprinted with the permission of ElderLawAnswers.com.  If you have any questions regarding the material in this article and how it applies to you, please contact Pearson Bollman Law at 515-298-8850.

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