Changed circumstances may mean amending a Will. What to keep in mind while doing that?

economictimes.indiatimes.com

As you get older, writing and amending a will becomes and important part of your estate planning. Wills get amended due to various reasons including good and bad reasons. Either way its important to understand the points that should be kept in mind while changing a will. The author, in the piece below, takes you through the critical points. Team RetyrSmart

Changed circumstances may mean amending a Will. What to keep in mind while doing that?

Revocation of old will
While making a new will or codicil, the testator should mention about earlier wills (with date) and that the last will stands cancelled/amended.

Conditions of valid will
Any new will or codicil should be made by a person of a sound mind who is not under any undue infl uence or fraud or coercion. He should make the will in writing and sign it in the presence of at least two witnesses. The witnesses too are required to sign the will.

Contents of the will/codicil
If a new will is being made, the testator must review his earlier bequests and if required, modify or retain the same in the new one so that there is no ambiguity between the two. In case of a codicil, necessary reference to the clause in the earlier will must be provided for easy interpretation.

Registration
It is not mandatory to register the will, however, it is advisable to do so. If the earlier will was registered, it is necessary to register the new will/codicil.

Destroy old copies
Old will copies should be physically destroyed to avoid confusion and legal issues.

Points to note

  • Amendment of joint wills eg. wills of husband and wife should be made with due attention to consequences of the change with respect to both the testators.
  • A will can be changed as many times as the testator wants to.
  • Once a fresh will is made, the previous one stands revoked.

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