William Daniel Powell

William Daniel Powell is a San Diego attorney that focuses his practice in the Estate Planning area helping families and individuals with Estate Planning needs. This is his regular blog where he writes on various subjects relating to estate planning and estate law.

Dec 16, 2014 | 0 comments

The Declaration of Independence – a timeless work of art by the drafters, and a crime punishable by death for all involved

Hello and welcome to my blog. For this first “episode” I was wondering how to begin talking about wills, trusts, estate planning, and property rights. I figured that a bit of history may be a good way to get the ball rolling so-to-speak, so let us begin with a truly wonderful document, experiment, and – though at times dubious – beginning to something that had never been tried in the course of humankind.

The Declaration of Independence

The entire Declaration of Independence, among other documents, can be found at:


So why was the Declaration of Independence written?

For many years before the Declaration of Independence was written, the colonies were asking King George for redress of grievances. The King provided no help. The King was making the colonies help pay for the recent Seven Years’ War in England. At this time, the Magna Carta had long been in effect and had been imposed on the King of England (back in 1215) by the subjects and stated basically that not even the King could be above the law and take away certain rights of the people. The colonists felt the King was taking away these rights and asked for relief stating that they were free men. After about ten years with no relief provided by the King, the colonist turned to armed conflict with the political control of England.