3 Steps You Can Take to Ensure Your Will

You can take steps to ensure your will is carried out according to your desires. An invalid will is the same as writing no will, and a court will make decisions about how to dispose of your property for you in those cases. Here are 3 things you can do to avoid that:

1 - Sign the Will and Get Witnesses

Some states allow a holographic will, or handwritten will, but these are often contested and probate judges prefer typed wills instead. You can better ensure your will being carried out as written, if you use a will preparation software or word processor to type the will. Sign it in the presence of 2 witnesses, and get them to sign the will as well.

2 - Hire a Lawyer for a Large Estate

Smaller estates don't require a lawyer, but you should hire an estate planning attorney if your will involves a large estate. You'll benefit from the advice given, which may include keeping some or all of the property out of probate. The attorney can also draft a will that will hold up under the court's scrutiny.

3 - Revoke an Older Will Properly

If you change your mind about a will, be sure to include a statement in your new will that makes it clear that the older will is revoked. Write a statement that says the new will revokes all previous wills.

Probate courts often will honor a solid, written will that is valid. However, that may not stop heirs from contesting it.


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