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Is your will valid?

Creating a will does not have to be a long process that causes you stress. At the same time, this does deserve the appropriate amount of attention.

Did you know a will must meet certain requirements to be considered valid? If you fall short in this area, your heirs could be faced with a challenge in the future. Will requirements vary from one state to the next, so make sure you take into consideration where you live.

First, you have to be in sound mind when creating a will. In other words, you should be able to fully understand the meaning of the document and the decisions you are making.

Secondly, you must sign your will. The only situation in which you can avoid this is if you are unable to do so. In this case, you can direct another person to sign on your behalf, in the presence of witnesses. Furthermore, it must be notarized.

Finally, a will remains in force until the person revokes it or it is replaced by another valid will. Of course, once the estate is distributed after death, the will is no longer valid.

If you have questions regarding the validity of your will, there is no time to wait around. You should review your will in great depth, determine what went wrong and make any necessary changes. This will ensure that you don't have any questions moving forward. Not only does this give you peace of mind, but you will know that your loved ones likely won't be faced with beneficiary challenges after you pass.

Source: FindLaw, "Estate Administration: The Will After Death," accessed Nov. 03, 2015

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