Drafting a Valid Will in Arizona
Drafting a value Will in Arizona, also known as a last will and testament, allow the transfer of property post-mortem, but creating a valid Will in Arizona requires following the Arizona laws pertaining to Wills. The state of Arizona acknowledges three types of Wills for estate planning in Arizona; specifically:
- holographic wills
- self-proven wills
- non-self-proven wills
To produce one of any of these three types of wills a person must:
• Be at least 18 years old
• Be in a healthy state of mind
• Not be unjustly influenced
• Have the knowledge of their property with specific intent to distribute it among known persons.
It is important to know Arizona requires the Last Will and Testament to be in writing and signed by the person distributing their property or“testator” along with two witnesses. If the testator cannot physically sign the will then they may appoint someone to do so for them while the testator is in their presence. Each witness must see the testator sign the Will or they can be told by the testator that they, in fact, signed the Will. Both witnesses must sign the Will themselves while in the presence of the testator and the other witness. It is important that both witnesses also have a sound mind along with being uninterested in the inheritance.
Now, in Arizona, a self-proven Will may be adopted if the Will is signed before or after the acknowledgment of the testator along with affidavits from the witnesses. Also, these acknowledgments and affidavits must be made before an officer that is authorized to administer oaths under the laws of the state in which execution occurs and are evidenced by the officer’s certificate with an official seal. Next, is a non-self-proving will.
Previously Holographic Wills was not valid because the forms did not adequately represent the testator’s intent to perform aa testamentary act which made them unenforceable. However today, in Arizona Holographic Wills are enforceable but it is usually advised against doing so because of how complicated and varied a Last Will and Testament can be.
You will also be required to name an executor to implement and follow the terms of your will. You should choose someone trustworthy to act as your executor to ensure he or she follows the terms of your Will. You will also need to familiarize yourself with the legal duties imposed on an executor by various Arizona estate planning laws.
Contact our experienced Arizona Estate Planning Attorneys at (480)947-4339.
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