Wills, probate & advanced directives

Legal Information

Mother and daughter

In this section of Washington LawHelp you will find general legal information and resources about wills, probate and other advanced directives in Washington state.

  • After Death Occurs: A Checklist

    General information and a checklist of important things to do when someone close to you dies. Read More

    Legal Voice
  • Basic Estate Planning for Unmarried Couples

    This memo provides you with some basic background information to get you started on preparing your "estate plan." Read More

    Legal Voice
  • Dealing with Death

    General information on things to consider when dealing with a death. Read More

    Washington State Attorney General
  • Probate Law Guide

    This guide briefly discusses issues related to probating an estate and most references are to materials for Washington State. Read More

    King County Law Library
  • Estate Planning: Wills, Trusts and Probate

    Information on how to create a simple will and other information you should know about the process. Read More

    Nolo Press
  • Mental Health Advance Directives

    A mental health advance directive (MHAD) is a written document that describes your directions and preferences for treatment and care during times when you are having difficulty communicating and making decisions. It can inform others about what treatment you want or don't want, and it can identify a person called an "agent" who you trust to make decisions and act on your behalf. Read More

    DSHS - Mental Health Division
  • Probate: What You Need to Know about Administering an Estate

    This short publication explains the probate process in Washington state. Read More

  • Understanding the Four C's of Elder Law Ethics

    There are several reasons why lawyers need to meet with your family member or friend alone for at least part of the case evaluation process, so please don’t be alarmed or offended. Read More

    American Bar Association
  • How do I Sign Documents When I am Physically Unable?

    8401EN - As long as you are mentally competent to understand what you are signing, the fact that you cannot actually sign does not need to keep you from executing the document. Just follow the procedures we explain in this publication. Read More

    Northwest Justice Project
  • Revocable Living Trusts

    Information about what a revocable living trust is and why you might create one. Read More

    Washington State Bar Association
  • Washington First Responder Will Clinic

    The Washington Will Clinic aims to provide basic estate planning documents - wills, powers of attorney, and healthcare directives - for Washington first responders and their spouses/state registered domestic partners at no cost. Read More

  • Washington Probate Instructions and Forms

    How to Probate a Washington Decedent's Estate for those who have never set foot in a Courthouse. Read More

    Washington Probate
  • Five Wishes Resources - Living Will

    Five Wishes is an easy to use legal document written in everyday language that lets adults of all ages plan how they want to be cared for in case they become seriously ill. Create your personalized documents online for a fee of $5.00. It is unique among all other living will and health agent forms because it speaks to all a person's needs: medical, personal, emotional and spiritual. Five Wishes also helps structure discussions with your family and physician. Read More

    Aging with Dignity