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Wills

In order for a will to be valid, it must be:-

made by a person who is 18 years old or over; and

made voluntarily and without pressure from any other person; and

made by a person who is of sound mind. This means that she/he is fully aware of the nature of the document s/he is writing or signing and aware of her/his property and the identify of the people who may inherit; and in writing; and

signed by the person making the will in the presence of two witnesses; and

signed by the two witnesses, in the presence of the person making the will, after s/he has signed. A witness or the married partner of a witness cannot benefit from a will. If a witness is a beneficiary (or the married partner of a beneficiary), the will is still valid,but the beneficiary will not be able to inherit under the will.

Although it will be legally valid even if it is not dated, it is advisable to ensure that the will also includes the date on which it is signed.

As soon as the will is signed and witnessed, it is complete.

What if there is no Will?

Speak to a solicitor - it is safer in the long run because various laws affect who is entitled to wind up the estate and receive the money.

Updated: 27 Oct 2014
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