Now that we’re in the technology age, some people choose to read their Will live before a video camera. Are video wills legal? Usually, this adds to the written will where in most states a video must accompany a written will. Be sure that the written Will is witnessed. This too may be video taped.
Are video Wills legal? A video will makes it hard to contest because it shows the mental competency of the person and the proper signing of the Will. Many use the video Will to provide the testator’s explanations of how various provisions of the Will should be interpreted. The testator can at this time clarify in detail what he or she means by certainty what they want so it is clear and to avoid disputes.
In many states, 18 is the ‘legal’ age of an adult. Forty Seven States require that the person making the Will be at least 18. South Dakota requires the Will maker to be over 18. Louisiana has a minimum age of 16 and Georgia, 14 years of age. Go figure. Some States say if you are under 18 and married, you can make a Will.
Are video Wills legal? The phrase, “Being of Sound Mind and Body”, is essential in the making of a Will that is binding. It means you are aware that you are executing a Will and are familiar with the persons, family and property mentioned in the Will. You may want to add a doctor’s certificate or assessment. A video Will can add to the fact that you are of sound mind and excellent health.
The purpose of a Will is to distribute property to your beneficiaries. Many States provide the living spouse the opportunity to take a defined part of the estate regardless of the Will.
Many States prohibit the spouse from not being included. Some allow the spouse to a share of or 1/3 no matter what the Will says. One way to not include a spouse is through a premarital agreement. But, the courts usually look very closely at these agreements.
Are video wills legal?
For minor children, you may want to consider a children’s trust. It provides financial support until they are adults in the eyes of the law.
Be careful in selecting a trustee who will manage and distribute funds. The trustee must work closely with the guardian. The trustee and guardian are the same person. If you die without a will, it is called Intestate and the court will step in to protect the minor children and appoint a court guardian. For adult children, you can disinherit them with the exception in the State of Louisiana. A video Will helps support your wishes and clarifies clearly what you wanted.
Are video Wills legal? Some States allow the signing of wills without witnesses. These are hand written Wills signed only by the Will maker. A few States recognize oral Wills. A video Will certainly is going to support what you are saying.
Are video Wills legal? No matter what you choose to do, a written Will or Trust, be sure to consult with an attorney who specializes in Wills, Trusts and Estates. You have worked hard for what you have. Be sure what you want after you leave this world goes where you wished it to go.
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Ric Dalberri is a graduate of Columbia State University & has been involved in his own business (sold) employing over 100 people. Ric was also a top producer as a Financial Specialist for over a decade with one of the largest financial institutions in the U.S.
Ric is the founder of Retirement USA which provides complete solutions for your lifestyle. Please visit and sign up for the free newsletter.
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