Where Should I Keep My Will and End of Life Documents?

Keep your Will at home with your other important documents, clearly labeled as your Will.  It is best not to put your Will in your safe deposit box, if you have one, unless you are utterly certain another person you trust can access the safe deposit box.  If they fail, your personal representative may need a court order to get into that box, and the bank may not release the Will, if discovered, to you, but only to your attorney, at least in King County.  KCLSPR 98.04(d).  Keep your gift list and funeral Instructions with your Will original.

It is possible, but not an action I recommend, to file your Will before your death with a superior court in Washington.  The clerk of the court will seal the Will.  The Will may be withdrawn from the court registry by the testator, or by others with court approval.  RCW 11.12.265.

Keep one original durable power of attorney at home with your important documents.  Give the other original durable power of attorney to your first nominated attorney-in-fact.

Give your original directive to physicians to your primary care physician.  He should scan it into your electronic medical records for transmission to medical facilities you may enter in the future.  Keep a copy with your Will at home.

You may want to give a copy of your end of life instruments to a loved one for safe-keeping.  That, however, is up to you.  Your documents are private if you wish them to remain private.

Lancaster Law Office will retain a copy of your Will and other end of life instruments for the duration of Brad Lancaster’s life.