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What is a holographic will and is it valid in Arizona?

The laws regarding wills can vary from state to state. While a will is an important part of an estate plan, many people choose to utilize a number of different estate documents to ensure their wishes are followed.

In Arizona, the laws regarding will are similar to the laws in other states; however, there is one notable exceptions. Arizona allows a holographic will. While this may sound like a something out of a science fiction movie, it actually just means a handwritten will.

For a will to be considered valid in Arizona, the testator -- or the person making the will -- has to be of sound mind and at least 18 years old. There must be two witnesses who sign the will and they must sign it within a reasonable time after witnessing the testator signing the will. Holographic wills are valid if the testator writes and signs the will. It doesn't have to be signed by a witness. A nuncupative will is an oral will and it is not allowed in Arizona.

When you are creating a will, you may be a bit confused on what has to be included in order to make sure everything you want it to do is done. Some of the other estate planning instruments include trusts, of which there are several kinds. In order to make sure your estate plan addresses all your wishes and needs, it is best to have it examined by an experienced estate planning lawyer. Your estate plan should also be reviewed every few years to address any life changes that might have occurred.

Source: FindLaw, "Arizona Wills Laws," accessed May 27, 2016

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