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How Do You Create a Valid Will in California?
To create a will in California you must:
- Be An individual at least 18 years of age or older.
- Be of sound mind, which means that you:
- Comprehend what it means to make a will.
- Know the nature and extent of the property you own.
- Can recall who your relatives are.
- Are in good mental health and are not affected by delusions or hallucinations that may affect your estate (your property and belongings).
- Put it in writing. To be valid your will be written on paper. While California does recognize handwritten wills, it is a best practice to use a computer, a printer, and good quality paper.
- Sign your will in front of two witnesses. Note, a handwritten will need not be signed by witnesses.
- Have your witnesses sign your will at the same time. They may sign after you have if they witness your acknowledgement of your signature.
- Ensure that your witnesses are not beneficiaries of the will. A beneficiary witness may lose his gift if it is more than he would have received if you died without a will (intestate). This is because under California law when a beneficiary acts as a witness, the law presumes that the will is being signed under duress.
Do I Have to Notarize my Will?
No. In Californian, there is no requirement that a will be notarized.
Can a Will be Changed or Revoked after it is Signed?
Yes. You may change or even revoke your will at any time. You may revoke it by
- Destroying it by burning, cancelling, tearing, or obliterating it will the intent to revoke it.
- Creating a new will that specifically states that the new will revokes the old will or has different terms.
Where Can I get more Information and Assistance with my Estate Plan?
To start your estate plan today, call the Law Office of Jonathan Alexander at (949) 334-7823. Mr. Alexander has almost 20 years of legal experience. He can help you create an estate plan that protects you, your family, your property, and your legacy. Call today for a confidential consultation.
To learn more about Mr. Alexander, his practice, and his estate planning philosophy visit his bio linked here.
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