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Must Write a Will

Why You Must Write A “WILL”…

 

You've heard that if you do nothing else to take care of your legal affairs, you should write a WILL.

 

If you don't make a will before your death, The law of land will determine who gets your property and a Judge may decide who will raise your Minor Children, (and either or both may not be whom you would have chosen).

 

Writing such an important document can be daunting, but it doesn't need to be. All you need is a basic will, you can do-it-yourself or approach an advocate and make a legally binding “WILL”,  that :

 

Leaves your property to the people, only you choose, i.e.; your Loved Ones.

 

It  Names  a guardian to care for your minor children.

 

It  Names  someone to manage the property you leave behind to minor children.

 

It Names  your Executor, the person with authority to make sure that the terms  of  your will are carried out.

 

 

Legal Terms for you to Understand:

 

Testator : A person who makes his will is a testator.

Estate:The sum of all the assets of a person, less his liabilities becomes his estate. In short, all properties, bank accounts, investments, insurances and collectibles, less the liabilities of a person, are collectively called a person's estate.

Beneficiary /Legatee:Legatee is a person who inherits the estate. You should state how you wish your assets /estate to be distributed. This includes naming one or more persons whom, you would like to receive all or part of your assets/ estate when you die, and who will benefit if your first choice beneficiary (or second or third) predeceases you.

Executor:A person who executes the contents of the Will after the demise of the testator is called the executor. The executor is the legal representative for all purposes of the deceased person.

Probate:Probate is the legal process of settling the estate of a deceased person, specifically resolving all claims and distributing the deceased person's property under the valid will.

 

 

 

Points  To  Remember  While  Making  a Will.

 

Write your WILL on good quality thick white paper so it doesn’t get spoiled over a period of time. It should be stored in a plastic envelope in full size, without folds.

 

If possible, have the two witnesses be a Doctor and a Lawyer. A doctor signing a WILL, would erase the doubt of you, being of unsound mind. The lawyer, will vet the WILL and make sure you don’t make any mistakes  and write  as well as sign the WILL in a proper manner. 

 

If a Doctor or a Lawyer is not available, you may make any two independent witnesses. The attesting witness and his or her spouse should not be a beneficiary under the terms of your WILL. This might create vested interests and may make your will invalid. Their full names and addresses should be given. (Note: Witnesses need not necessarily know the contents of the will).

 Also, make sure that the witnesses are younger than you and not very old as your will might be in effect for several years ! And you want the witnesses  to be present in this world.

 

You must keep just one more copy of will and store it  separately from the original WILL. The Original will must be stored very safely in your bank, or in a safe deposit box. You must also make sure that your close relatives or beneficiary(ies), know  where you have kept your WILL. Please Do not make many copies of your  WILL.

 

In case of Hindus, it should be clearly stated if the property is inherited or not. No ancestral property can be assigned to any person through a WILL. It will go to all your legal heirs as it is “Inherited”

 

A will must  be clearly dated and if more than one will is made, the one with the latest date should clearly mention that this is your latest will and nullifies  all the previous ones. In fact, there should be a statement in your will, nullifying all other previous wills. The pages should also be numbered  to  avoid  any fraud.

 

The division of assets should be mentioned in percentage or ratio  terms rather than absolute numbers as their value often fluctuates, so it is always better to mention how much percentage each beneficiary will receive, rather than absolute numbers. Unless it is Hard Cash.

 

 

Some Simple Guidelines to Write a WILL:

You  can hand write your WILLin ink,  but it is preferred  to be typed.

It could be on a Plain Paper  and does not require any stamp paper & and it need not be registered.

It should preferably be drafted by a professional lawyer, and checked by your  accountant.

It is always better to  name, One or  more executors  in your will  to administer the estate and distribute the property, as per your wishes.

The will must be signed by you in the presence of at least two witnesses who must also sign the will at the same time.

The Executor or the beneficiary cannot attest the will as a witness.

The executor of the WILL can also be named as a beneficiary and vice versa.  Sign each page of the will, so that nobody can substitute or replace a page later on, nor can anybody argue about fraudulent insertion of a page subsequently.

Review your will regularly, maybe once a year. It may need amendments to make changes as per your financial or family circumstances.

Keep your will in a safe place e.g. in a bank locker. Inform the executor and beneficiaries where the Will is kept. Also give a signed copy to your lawyer.

On the demise of  a spouse, the surviving spouse after acquiring the assets / estate  from the deceased spouse, needs to revise his/her will.

 

To get the  “WILL”  format,  Please Click Here…