Do It Yourself Legal Documents Can Cost You Big

Loved ones are fighting a prolonged court battle after the former Inc. CEO, Tony Hsieh, joined a long list of prominent celebrities who died without leaving a Will. As when Prince died without a Will, the court has said the CEO died intestate, the legal term used when someone died without a Will.  But courts can still determine that you died intestate even if you tried to draft your own Will.

We see many cases involving individuals who thought “drafting my own contract” or “drafting my own Will” sounded like a good plan.  There are many reasons you may want to draft your own contracts or create your own Will.  It can be a desire to maintain privacy and control, save money on attorney fees, or simply thinking you don’t have enough assets to justify the costs.  Unfortunately, he pitfalls of drafting your own contracts or drafting your own Will are numerous.


Common problems with drafting your own contracts can include:


    • Failing to Account for Licensing Requirements – Many industries have specific requirements for licensing that come with specific statutory limitations and consequences. Failing to account for these can result in an unenforceable contract, jeopardize your license, or require you to double pay for services.
    • Paying More After the Other Party Breaks the Contract – If someone fails to live up to their end of the bargain, you can take them to court. But you’ll still have to pay your attorney out of pocket, even if you win.  An experienced small business attorney can make sure your contracts give you the best chance of recovering your attorney fees after you win.
    • Failing to Use the “Magic Words” – If you don’t clearly spell out your intentions in a contract, then you run the risk of having a judge decide what your agreement means. Some types of contracts are required to be made in writing for this very reason.  A few types take this a step further and require precise words to be used in order for the contract to be enforceable.  Knowing the different standards can be the difference between your small business’s “big break” and a piece of scrap paper.


Common problems with drafting your own Will can include:



Do it yourself legal documents come with a cost.  Avoid the dangers of do it yourself legal documents by checking out our team at Patterson Bray for your small business or estate planning needs.  Please call us at 901-372-5003 or email us here. We have offices in Memphis and Nashville TN.

No Comments

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Patterson Bray Logo