What is required for a will to be valid?

Jul 9, 2020 | Estate Planning

Having a valid will is important to passing property and assets when the estate planning passes. Because of this, ensuring that the estate planner’s will is valid is essential which requires knowledge of what makes a will valid.

There are several requirements associated with a valid will. These requirements can also differ by state so it is important for estate planners to know what makes a will valid in their state. The first requirement for a will to be valid is that the estate planner has legal capacity to enter into the will which usually means that the estate planner is of legal age of at least 18 years old or older. In addition, the estate planner must have testamentary capacity which means that the estate planner knows that they are making a will, understands the nature and extent of their estate; and understands that they are disposing of property and assets.

The estate planner also needs to have the intent to make their will as a revocable disposition of their property and assets and must do so voluntarily free from coercion or undue influence. Lastly, there are typically witness and signature requirements that estate planners should ensure they properly fulfill. Specific procedures concerning how to revoke a will or update a will are also important to be familiar with as the estate planner maintains their estate plan moving forward.

Estate planning is an important part of life and having a valid will is an important part of any estate plan. As a result, estate planners should be familiar with the requirements to set up a valid will and estate plan for themselves.