Two things are certain: death and taxes. That's why knowing all
about Wills is important for everybody.
Having a will makes your passing easier on your loved ones at a time
when they will be devastated with grief and in no condition to try to discern what you wishes were, or fight with
the state over who gets your property.
If you don't already know all about wills, or a little bit about wills, we
can help inform you, making it easier for you to go ahead and make your will. First, you must know that laws
about wills vary from state to state. If you want to know all about wills in your particular state, you should
consult an estate planning attorney in your town or city. However, if you want to know all about wills generally,
then keep reading.
Who Can Make A
A person who makes a will is called a "testator." Anyone 18 years of age or older can be a
testator. A testator is not necessarily someone who knows all about wills. A testator merely has to be "of sound
mind." If a person knows the nature and extent of her property, who her relatives are, and what she is giving to
whom, then a judge will generally consider the person to be of sound mind.
What Is Required In A Will?
A will has a number of technical legal requirements. The idea behind all these technicalities
is to make it seem like a big deal to make a will, because it is a big deal. Even if you make a will when you are
penniless or have very little property, if you do not renounce or revise your will, it will be in effect many years
later when you may have wealth and property.
A will must be in writing. About half the states permit a will to be handwritten. Whether the
will is handwritten on stationery or printed from a form in a lawyer's office, a will must be signed and witnessed
by at least two people. The witnesses are required to sign a special affidavit at the time they witness the will,
in case they are unavailable at the time of the Testator's death. A will must be "published" in most states; i.e.,
the Testator must state that he intends the document to be his will.
With those simple requirements, anyone can make a will. Knowing all about what is required
takes some of the anxiety away, doesn't it?