10 Facts about A Will you must know

January 2018



Untimely deaths in a large number of households are often overshadowed by family members squabbling over inheritance. Thus, it is advised to make a valid will in one's lifetime so as to reduce any scope of a family feud over a property of the deceased.We compiled a list of 10 things that you must know before you decide to write a will:

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1 Who can make a will: Any person of sound mind, who is not a minor, can make a will.

2 Who can be a legatee: A legatee is a principal beneficiary or inheritor. A minor, a corporation and another juristic person can be a legatee. If the minor has been named as legatee by a testator, then a guardian should be appointed by the testator to manage the bequeathed property. One can make some provision for a faithful servant, a nurse or a friend in need of money.

3 Ensure it is error-free: A valid will should clearly spell out the name of the testator, without any error in initials, spellings or any grammatical mistake, thus, leaving no scope for any interpretation.

4 Right to appoint a legatee: The testator has an absolute right to appoint any person as a legatee or beneficiary of a will.

5 Takes effect after death: A will becomes enforceable only after the death of the testator. It gives absolutely no rights to the legatee (the person who inherits) until the death of the testator.

6 Codicil: If a testator intends to make a few changes to the will, without changing the entire will, he can do so by making a codicil to the will.

7 Declaration of 'last will': There is no restriction on how many times a will can be made by a testator. However, only the last will made before his death is enforceable.

8 Full disclosure: To ensure that your will is not challenged in a court because of discrepancies, it is advisable to declare all moveable and immovable properties in the legal instrument.

9 Attestation: The testator must sign the will in the presence of at least two independent witnesses, who have to certify that the testator signed the will in their presence.

10 Registration: Although it is not mandatory for a testator to register his will, it is advisable to do so.

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