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What is a Valid Will in Florida?

If you or someone you care about wants to express how they want their assets to be distributed at the time of their death, they should make a Last Will and Testament.  We call it simply, “a will.”
Florida law is very clear on the formalities required to make an enforceable will.  Florida Statutes, Section 732.502 sets forth the requirements:

The will must be in writing.  Oral wishes and oral wills are not acceptable.
The person making the will should sign it at the end, in front of at least two witnesses, and declare that it is his or her will.
The two witnesses should see the maker of the will sign, and the witnesses should sign at the end of the document while in the presence of the person making the will and each other.

No particular form of words is necessary to the validity of a will IF it is executed with the formalities required by law.  There are provisions in the statute for persons who cannot physically sign the will.  Take advantage and be aware that there is a statute that will allow the will to be self-proving, and therefore admissible in the Probate Court without having a sworn statement submitted by a witness to the signing of the will.

As I said in one of my prior blogs, based upon over forty years of experience as a probate attorney, take my suggestions regarding wills. Make a will, no matter what your age.  It is the surest way to assure that those who are important to you receive your bounty.  Use a lawyer to write your will; it is not expensive. Use a lawyer to oversee the signing of your will, because, as explained above, there are legal technicalities that must be followed to have an effective will. Keep your original will in a safe, fire-proof place, and tell the person who you want to be your personal representative of your estate where they can find the original will.

If you have questions or concerns about making a will or other important documents like Durable Power of Attorney, Healthcare Power of Attorney, or Living Wills in the Fort Lauderdale, Broward County, Florida area, call Kim Douglas Sherman, Esquire, at (954) 489-9500.  Please look at our qualification set forth at our website: ShermanLegal.com.  Do Not procrastinate.  Do Not let your relatives fight over your estate.  Do make your intentions clear.  Make a valid will and keep it safe!