A Will is a written direction controlling the disposition of property at death. The laws of each state set the formal requirements for a legal Will.
The Author/ Creator of A Will (called the testator), must be at least 18 years old.
And must be of sound mind at the time the Will is signed. A Will must be written.
Your Will must be witnessed and notarized in the special manner provided by law for Wills.
It is necessary to follow exactly the formalities required by law for the execution of a Will.
To be valid and effective, a Will must be proven valid in, and allowed by, a probate court.
A Will is only final after the death of the testator/author of the Will, and it may be changed or added to by the testator/author by drawing a new will or by a “codicil,” which is simply a separately written addition or amendment executed with the same formalities as a will. A will’s terms cannot be changed by writing something in or crossing something out after the will is executed.
- Note: Writing on the Will after its execution may invalidate part of the will or all of it.