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Do’s and don’ts when writing your last will and testament

On Behalf of | Mar 20, 2024 | ESTATE PLANNING - Wills

In the event of death, your last will and testament may ensure that your beneficiaries will receive your assets accordingly. It’s an important legal document that must be valid so that the courts will accept it.

In Georgia, a competent person aged at least 14 can create a will. They need to have a logical desire and voluntary will to write and execute it.

Sign the will along with 2 witnesses

The written will, whether by hand or typed, must bear your signature. If you cannot sign due to physical reasons, you may assign someone to sign it for you. After which, two witnesses should sign the will in your presence. The witnesses should also be competent 14-year-olds and above who are not beneficiaries.

It’s not a requirement to have a notarized will, but it could expedite the probate process. It’s because the court doesn’t need to contact the witnesses anymore if the will is self-proving. You and the witnesses can go to the notary to sign the will. You also need to sign affidavits to prove your identity and awareness about signing the will.

Don’t forget to include an alternate executor

You should have a trustworthy executor to implement the wishes in your will. In case they die or are unable to perform their duties, it’s advisable to have a secondary executor. Name the alternate executor and make sure that they are aware of their assignment.

Update your will with important provisions

The job is not over once you have a will. You must update it with provisions such as naming a guardian for your minor children. You can also add and remove beneficiaries. If you want to exclude someone, you must specify it in the will to avoid confusion.

Don’t keep your will in a random or unsafe place

You must store your original last will and testament in a fireproof place. Your executor should have easy access to it for better and quicker implementation. It’s also recommended to give copies of your will to your executor and loved ones.

Extending your legacy

Life is a journey that concludes eventually. When you are gone, your will does not only reflect your accomplishments. It also expresses your desire to share your blessings and extends the legacy you worked hard for.