St Petersburg, Fl, what are the Legal Requirements for Writing a Will?

Apr 1, 2020 10:01 PM ET

It is a wise decision for every adult in Florida to have a well-written and thoroughly prepared last will and testament in case they face sudden death. A will gives instructions to one’s living representatives to distribute their wealth and assets according to their wishes.

For a legal will to be formally accepted, it must fulfill the following requirements:

The will must have been written by the testator when he or she was at least 18 years old
The will must have been written when the person was in a state of clear and sound thinking
The will must be physically written
The will must be notarized and witnessed legally
All formalities of the will must be fulfilled according to the state one resides in

For the will to be effective, it must be proved valid in court. It is best to contact a will attorney in Florida to ensure that all the appropriate rules and conditions are fulfilled in one’s will.  A person doesn’t have to be sick or injured to prepare their will. Death can come unexpectedly and anyone who has accumulated assets and has dependents should make sure they have a legally approved will ready just in case.

What can I include in my will?

A person can choose anyone who qualifies under the law to be their representative (executor) of their will. The personal representative will be responsible for managing the estate and it can be done by either a company, bank, or individual.

In the will, a person can include:

Instructions to distribute the estate to family members or others

Instructions to sell real estate and other assets

Gifts of charity

The decision of who bears tax burdens

Instructions of how minors and dependents should be taken care of

If a person dies without a will then the property will be distributed to the heirs with a formula decided by the law, or through the inheritance statute. The only case in which one’s property goes to the state is if there are absolutely no heirs to inherit the wealth.

Drafting a will that corresponds with government policy can be tricky and that is why a person should make sure they get a legal representative to help them with the process. The last thing anyone wants is to have their wealth distributed the wrong way after they die. Through creating a will that is legally approved, a person can make sure all their assets are divided in the way they feel is necessary. If a person does not have any heirs then it is even more important that they have a will that explains who exactly they would like to give their assets to because if they fail to do so, all of one’s assets go back to the state and the state gets to decide what to do with it.

Though it may seem morbid to draft out a will while one is still healthy and young, it is the wisest decision to take for one’s peace of mind and for the security of one’s dependents.

 

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