When someone passes away, things are made exponentially more challenging when a will isn’t valid. When the validity of a will is called into question, life is made even harder for loved ones who are already dealing with loss and grief. So how do you know if your will is valid in Maryland?
What is a Will?
It’s a document that specifies what a person wants to happen to their assets after they die. A strong will puts their intentions in writing and gives clear direction, leaving no room for ambiguity.
Maryland law requires that your will has the signature of the individual who is creating it. This person is referred to as the testator or testatrix.
It must also be Attested and receive signatures from a pair of witnesses, both of whom have to be credible. These two are required to be present with the individual who wrote the document.
You can find attestation clause samples online if you’re overwhelmed by the official-sounding format or unsure of how to begin. It’s a great way to at least brainstorm and get the ball rolling on this vital legal document.
The importance of creating a will
Of all the legal documents you’ll make over the course of your estate planning, a will is among the most crucial. It’s how you legally declare what you intend to happen with your property and assets after you have passed away, such as how you want to distribute them amongst your family, loved ones, and favorite charities.
A critical aspect of writing a will is the naming of a personal representative. This individual is in charge of collecting your assets, paying bills, and distributing your estate. The distribution of your estate is all done in the way laid out in your will.
If your will was executed somewhere out of state, it’s still valid in Maryland so long as the laws in the state it was executed were followed. You’ll probably want to double-check the validity of your will every time you move to a new state, which can be done through the Probate Division.