Although DIY estate planning software, websites, and pre-made kits are a dime a dozen, one size does not fit all when it comes to estate plans. Every state, including California, has its own legal requirements and procedures that must be followed for an estate plan to have legal effect. If you have minimal assets, do not have any real property, and want to leave everything to your closest living relative, then a DIY estate plan may work for you. For any other estate, creating your own estate plan carries significant risk. Whatever you decide, be sure to follow the exact procedural requirements for creating valid estate planning documents in California, including very specific witnessing requirements. An estate plan is one of the few legal acts that survives death. Because it will not be tested until you are gone, it is worth doing everything possible to ensure it is done right.