Holographic Will

Definition of 'Holographic Will'


A holographic will is a will that is handwritten and signed by the testator (the person who makes the will). Some states do not recognize holographic wills and those that do require the will to meet certain requirements. The minimal requirements that must be met for a holographic will to be recognized are:

  • Proof that the testator actually wrote the will
  • Proof that the testator had the mental capacity to write the will
  • The will must contain the testator's wish to disburse personal property to beneficiaries.

Investopedia explains 'Holographic Will'


To avoid fraud, some states require that a holographic will contain the maker's signature. A holographic will does not have to be witnessed or notarized. However, if the will is typed instead of handwritten and it is unwitnessed, then the will is invalid because typed wills must be witnessed.


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