Testamentary Will

DEFINITION of 'Testamentary Will'

A testamentary will is a traditional will, sometimes referred to as just a will. A will is a legal document that is used to transfer an estate to beneficiaries after the death of the testator (the person that makes the will). Testamentary wills are also used to appoint guardians for minor children, select executors of wills and set up trusts for beneficiaries. Any person over the age of majority and that is of sound mind can legally draft a will.

BREAKING DOWN 'Testamentary Will'

Every will must contain the following: a) Clear indication that the testator is the maker of the will b) A statement by the testator that he or she revokes any previous wills or codicils c) A statement by the testator that demonstrates that he or she is of sound and mind and is not under duress to dispose the property, and d) a signature that is at the end of the will. Any words that come after the end of the signature will be ignored by the court.

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RELATED FAQS
  1. How do we get more information about a testamentary trust?

    There are 17 beneficiaries on a $900K testamentary trust. The bank and our advisor tell us it's in the closing ... Read Answer >>
  2. How is maintenance of standard of living for survivors accomplished in estate planning?

    Understand what elements of an estate plan can assist in creating certainty for survivors that allows them to maintain their ... Read Answer >>
  3. What is the difference between an intervivos trust and a testamentary trust?

    Understand the differences between a testamentary trust and an inter-vivos (living) trust, and learn why each is important ... Read Answer >>
  4. How to name a trust as a secondary beneficiary on life insurance?

    My spouse is the first beneficiary on my life policy. How do I correctly word my trust as the secondary? Do I specially name ... Read Answer >>
  5. Is a trust necessary for estates under 3 million dollars?

  6. How do I find out for sure that I am the beneficiary of my deceased friend?

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