A Holographic Will is an entirely handwritten document directing the wishes an individual (testator) has regarding the distribution of their estate. This document must meet the following requirements:
Entirely handwritten by the testator Clarified that the document is a Holographic Will and not just notes for a future Will Testator must be of sound mind Testator must name a beneficiary Not supervised, assisted and/or directed by an attorney Not signed by a witness or notary Dated (in some states) A Holographic Will is considered valid in all but a handful of states. The verification process can be much more complicated due the creation of the Will itself. Because no witnesses are present and the document is not notarized, proving the Will was handwritten by the testator themselves and that the testator was of sound mind at the time the Will was handwritten is where the complications can arise. Testimony from individuals known to the testator and/or a handwriting expect may be required.
While a Holographic Will can be legal, when making the important decisions determining your final wishes, it is best to consult with a professional for assistance in creating a Will. You can find a list of Estate Planning Attorneys in our Blog at VaultKeepers.net.
The list below identifies which states recognize Holographic Wills and which do not.
Alabama – no Alaska – yes Arizona – yes Arkansas – yes California – yes Colorado – yes Connecticut – no Delaware – conflicting information, consult with a professional Florida – no Georgia – no Hawaii – yes Idaho – yes Illinois – no Indiana – no Iowa – no Kansas – no Kentucky – yes Louisiana – yes Maine – yes Maryland – yes & no, make sure to read state guidelines Massachusetts – no Michigan – yes Minnesota – no Mississippi – yes Missouri – no Montana – yes Nebraska – yes Nevada – yes New Hampshire – no New Jersey – yes New Mexico – no New York – yes & no, make sure to read state guidelines North Carolina – yes North Dakota – yes Ohio – no Oklahoma – yes Oregon – no Pennsylvania – conflicting information, consult with a professional Rhode Island – conflicting information, consult with a professional South Carolina – conflicting information, consult with a professional South Dakota – yes Tennessee – yes Texas – yes Utah – yes Vermont – no Virginia – yes Washington – conflicting information, consult with a professional West Virginia – yes Wisconsin – conflicting information, consult with a professional Wyoming – yes