How Much Does a Will Cost?

graphic of people confused by what a will costs

The cost to create a last will can range from $0 to $1,500+ depending on a variety of factors:

In this article, we'll review each of these factors to provide you with an understanding of everything that goes into drafting a last will and how you can create one that's right for you and your budget.

How you create your last will

You have three options for creating your last will:

  1. Create your last will by yourself
  2. Create your last will with an attorney
  3. Create your last will with digital willmaking software like Just In Case Estates

The cost of these different options ranges from free to $1,500+.

bar graph showing cost of making a will under various options

Cost to Create Your Last Will by Yourself

Creating your last will by yourself can be "free" in the sense that you are not paying another person or company to generate your document. However, you may find that the extra time you spend researching how to safely and accurately do so would be better applied elsewhere.

Additionally, many DIY willmakers mistakenly believe that creating a last will starts and ends with the last will document. There's much more that goes into a comprehensive last will package than just the last will document itself.

Among other things, you'll also want to set up how your non-probate assets will transfer upon your death, prepare for potential incapacity (i.e., the inability to make or communicate your own decisions), and share details of your plan with key stakeholders. Many DIY willmakers fail to realize this, and they end up with an incomplete or unsuitable plan as a result.

Cost to Create Your Last Will With an Attorney

Most attorneys offer flat-fee pricing between $300 and $1,500+ to create a comprehensive last will package.

In addition to the other cost factors referenced in this article, expect to pay on the higher end of this range if you opt for a more experienced estate planning attorney or if you live in a large metropolitan area.

The process of creating your last will with an attorney varies slightly from practice to practice. Generally, you can expect to meet with the attorney over one or two sessions to review your specifics and discuss what you want to accomplish in your estate plan. In many cases, the attorney or paralegal on the attorney's team will then input your information into attorney-side document drafting software to generate the actual documents.

Cost to Create Your Last Will with a Digital Willmaking Service

Creating your last will with a reputable digital willmaking service costs between $100 and $600, depending on which online willmaker you choose.

Variance within that range is typically dictated by the level of customer support offered – no support, live customer support, or 1:1 review with a licensed attorney – as well as company-specific factors, such as the amount of money the company spends (and must recoup) on marketing or the target rate of return it seeks to deliver its investors.

As of 2024, the cost to create a last will with JIC Estates, LegalZoom, and Trust & Will -- three of the most popular online willmakers -- is as follows:

JIC Estates Legal Zoom Trust & Will
Document Creation Costs
Last Will (I) $135 $199 $199
Revocable Trust (C) $185 $299 $299
Additional Services
Live Support
Attorney Review +$200 +$100 +$300
Help with Non-Probate Assets Requires Attorney Review


(I) represents the cost of making an indvidiual plan

(C) represents the cost of making a couple's plan

Whether you are creating a last will for an individual or a couple

Creating last wills for couples (i.e., two separate last wills) costs more than creating a single last will for an individual.

Digital providers tend to charge 20-30% more to complete last wills for couples compared to the price of a single last will, whereas attorneys often charge 30-50% more -- even if the gifts you both are making are identical.

The complexity of your gifts

As the number of your beneficiaries or the conditions on gift distributions increases, expect to pay more in drafting costs when creating your last will with an attorney since the law office will need to dedicate more man-hours to incorporating this complexity.

If you create your plan with a digital willmaking service, you won't pay more for complex gift distributions.

That being said, you should generally avoid making lots of small gifts to many different beneficiaries through your last will. Doing so typically increases the cost of settling your estate, ultimately leaving beneficiaries with less. If you do want to leave small gifts, consider doing so through a pay-on-death checking account with all the beneficiaries named directly on the account.

The complexity of your assets

Many people are surprised to learn that not all types of assets pass through a last will.

A last will covers distribution of your probate assets, legal jargon for assets that do not carry a built-in beneficiary designation. Jewelry, vehicles, small businesses, and most real estate are all examples of probate assets.

Non-probate assets, also known as operation of law assets, that do have built-in beneficiary designations will pass outside of your last will directly to the beneficiary or beneficiaries listed on the account, to the extent that you have named them. For example, if you have an investment account (e.,g., Fidelity, Charles Schwab, etc.) you'll note that there is a section in the online account where you can designate who should receive the account upon your passing. As long as you complete this section, these assets will transfer outside of the probate process directly to those beneficiaries, overriding any other provisions in your last will to the contrary.

A good attorney or financial advisor will help you identify all your non-probate assets, confirm all your beneficiary designations are up to date, and ensure that these distributions work in tandem with those contemplated under your last will to fulfill your overall estate planning goals. When you create your comprehensive last will with Just In Case Estates, we'll help you do the same.

Cost of maintaining your last will

One of the key benefits of creating a comprehensive last will package is that it's largely a "set it and forget it" approach to estate planning.

The only instances in which you need to do anything to update your will-based estate plan is if any of the following occur:

  1. Your Needs, Desires, or Family Structure Changes
  2. You Acquire a New Non-Probate Asset
Updating for Needs, Desires, or Family Structure

As your needs, desires, or family structure change, you may wish to change certain provisions in your last will. Perhaps you celebrated the birth of a new child. Maybe your first choice of executor or personal representative is no longer available and you need to nominate someone else. Whatever the motivation, the only way to do this is to update or amend the last will.

The cost to make changes to your last will provisions varies depending on how you intend to make them.

If you created your last will with an estate planning attorney and wish to use the same one on your revisions, expect to pay as much as 20-30% of the original drafting price on those revisions -- even for a small change. If you opt to make the revisions with a different estate planning attorney, you may even have to pay for a full draft all over again.

Making changes to a last will you created with a digital willmaking service is generally far less expensive than making changes with an attorney. The cost to do so ranges from free to the price of an annual subscription. The table below shows representative costs of making a change at the 5 and 10 year market with some of the most popular willmaking software in 2024. You can add these costs to the initial document drafting cost to calculate an "all-in" cost of using each provider.

JIC Estates Legal Zoom* Trust & Will**
Ongoing Subscription Costs
Annual Subscription Cost FREE $199 $19
5 Yr Subscription $0 $896 $76
10 Yr Subscription $0 $1,891 $171
All-In Costs
Initial Drafting Cost, Individual $135 $199 $199
Total 10 Yr Ownership Cost $135 $2,090 $370


* Trust & Will includes one year of free updates with the initial purchase. Ability to update your plan renews at $19 / yr

** LegalZoom does not have a standalone subscription to continue to have ability to update your plan. This ability is instead lumped in with their Legal Assist Plan, which renews annually at $199.

Acquiring a New Non-Probate Asset

If you acquire a new non-probate asset, you'll need to add or update the beneficiary designations on that asset.

Making these updates doesn't cost anything and should take just a few minutes as most account providers offer streamlined ways to do so.

The important thing is that you remember to make the update in the first place. If you don't and leave the asset without a beneficiary designation, it will have to pass through the probate process, which could add additional cost and time to distribute the funds to beneficiaries.

How to Choose Where You Create Your Last Will

Cost is but one factor to consider when creating your last will

You should also take into account the level of support you'll receive -- not just in creating the last will documents but also preparing your plan holistically.

An experienced estate planning attorney and/or financial advisor can be a great resource if you want to pursue a mostly hands-off approach and have a higher willingness to pay.

When you create your last will with Just In Case Estates, our member success team will be standing by via email, phone, and text to answer any questions you may have and guide you through the entire process -- all at no extra charge.

You can get started on your comprehensive last will today and finish creating your documents in as little as 20-30 minutes.


Just In Case Estates is an online service providing legal forms and information. We are not a law firm and we do not provide legal advice. If you need legal advice, please use our legal expert matching service to connect with a qualified, licensed estate planning attorney near you.