I prepared this presentation for a deepening on Bahá'í wills that I gave in Albuquerque two years ago. I do not write wills any longer, and would not have any additional advice to offer the friends. Rather, I suggest they obtain a copy of the National Spiritual Assembly's guidance, and also look in "Developing Distinctive Bahá'í Communities" which can be downloaded from the American NSA's website.

In my opinion the friends do not need a Bahá'í lawyer to prepare their will. The portion of the will that is commanded in the Aqdas is for the believer himself or herself to write; not the lawyer. Any competent estate planning lawyer can accommodate the wishes of a believer in any faith.

I am also often asked whether it is advisable to purchase a software kit to help to write a will, and I feel this is a very dangerous practice. It is not merely the writing of the will that is important; it is the way a person' s property is structured. There is just no substitute for hiring a lawyer. My advice on finding a good one is, ask a bank trust department to recommend a lawyer.

-- Brent Poirier