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Points to consider that can affect a will's validity

Making a will is something that is very important for almost everyone. What some people don't realize is that there are certain things to consider when making a will because these conditions must be met in order for the will to be a valid legal document. Readers in Michigan should consider these points when they decide to make a will or update a current one.

Purpose and Mindset

You can't be forced into making a will because a will has to be voluntary for it to be valid. If you are being forced into writing out the will or if you are signing it under duress, the will isn't a valid document. In addition to making the will voluntarily, you also have to be of sound mind when you make it. You have to be able to understand what the will means and know that you are planning for what will happen to your things when you pass away.

Age and Ability

You have to be at the age of majority to make a will. Minors can't make a will. If you are a member of the military, which is possible for some 17-year-olds who have parental consent, you can make out a will that is legal. You also have to have the ability to decide who gets what. This must all be listed on the will in accordance with the requirement that you have met proper disposal of property guidelines.

Signatures and Witnesses

You have sign your will for it to be valid. You also have to have witnesses to sign your will. The two witnesses who sign your will can't benefit from the will in any form. This means that your heirs and beneficiaries are unable to sign the will. In some cases, notarizing the will might be advisable.

Because of variances in situations and estates, other requirements might exist for a will to be considered valid. Knowing about statutes that affect your will and your estate might help you to ensure that your will is a concise and legal document that can help your family follow your wishes when you are gone.

Source: FindLaw, "What Is a 'Valid Will'?" Aug. 20, 2014

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