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Know the importance of testamentary capacity when writing a will

On Behalf of | Jun 29, 2023 | Firm News

There are basic requirements when writing a will in Georgia. One part is testamentary capacity.

This might sound confusing to those who are unaware of the intricate details of estate planning, but it is imperative. From the start, it is useful to have guidance with these issues so there are no obstacles when the property is distributed after the testator has died.

Understanding the tenets of testamentary capacity

There are three parts to testamentary capacity under Georgia law.

First, there is a minimum age. People who are at least 14 can create a will unless they are found disabled and do not have the capacity to do so. Criminal history is also covered. Being convicted of a crime does not eliminate a person’s ability to make a will if they want to.

Next, the testator must have the rational objective to create a will and decide how their property will be handled after they have died.

Those who have been declared insane can only create a will while there are lucid. Those who are declining intellectually or categorized as “eccentric” in their habits cannot be prevented from writing a valid will.

Finally, there must be freedom of volition, meaning that the person is writing the will of their own accord. If they have been coerced or manipulated, then the will can be deemed invalid. Otherwise, it is perfectly legal for them to write a will.

Writing a valid will requires knowing and following the law

Since the will’s validity is one of the fundamental requirements, it is crucial to know the law. This is particularly true if there are questions about testamentary capacity and claims that the person should not have been able to write their will.