A Wills are legal documents that specify how your assets should be distributed upon your death based on your wishes. Two witnesses should be present.
Many examples are in front of us to show how a lack of WILL can lead to a mess for the next generation. For instance, consider the Ambani Family, the Singhania Family, the Kirloskar Family, the Nanda Family, and the Wadia Family.
A person who has good mental health and is a major can make a will. Wills obtained by force or undue influence are invalid since they were not made voluntarily. The ability to make a will is available to anyone, provided they are an adult. A will can be created at any age and multiple times.
Drafting a Will is an easy job, but it is the most neglected. Legally, all property details and assets details can be written down on a piece of paper (stamp paper is not required). Sign the document and mention the beneficiaries’ names. Two independent witnesses should attest to it. The beneficiaries of your will should not be witnesses. You should not make your Will beneficial to them.
Terminologies used in a WILL
- Testator – The person making a will
- Beneficiary(ies) – Persons who inherit property from a will
- Executor – The legal representative of the testator who will execute the Will. His/her job is to distribute assets according to the will.
- Codicil – A legal document used to amend, vary, or add to an existing will. Codicils can be used to make minor changes to a Will
Important sections of WILL
- Personal Details – Please provide your name, father’s name, residential address, date of birth, etc.,
- Declaration of Date – A WILL must clearly state the date when it was prepared.
- Validate Free Will – In your Will, you can state that you are not under any influence or being forced to create this Will.
- Provide Executor’s Details – The executor is the person who will carry out your wishes. Therefore, you should clearly mention his/her name, address, relationship, age, etc.,
- Details of Assets & Beneficiaries – This section is very important. Provide clear addresses for all immovable properties. Mention the movable assets, such as bank deposits, insurance policies, mutual fund units, etc., and the names of the beneficiaries. (For mutual funds, mention the Folio numbers)
- Signature – Sign the Will after mentioning the above information
- Signature of Witnesses – At least two witnesses must attest the Will. It is important that they mention the names and addresses of their fathers.
How to write a WILL in India?
We will now discuss how to write a WILL in India. Here are a few points to consider when writing a will.
- The Will is considered to be a living document. Changes can be made as many times as you like.
- It is required that you are at least 18 years old
- A review of your WILL is necessary if you buy or sell assets.
- It is possible to change the beneficiaries or executor names at any time. A Codicil may be made by you.
- Appointing an Executor is not mandatory, but it is highly recommended
- It would be best if the two witnesses and the executor were younger than you.
- Minor children may be listed as beneficiaries. However, you must nominate guardians for them.
- You can include joint properties in your Will. Your Will can only distribute assets to the extent of your share.
- All other investments, such as real estate, mutual funds, bank accounts, insurance policies, etc., are subject to your Will.
- It is possible to make a joint will. A joint Will can be written by both spouses. However, such a joint WILL can only become effective after both parties die, not during their lives.
- The Will can be revoked or cancelled at any time.
- Upon marriage, the WILL is revoked/cancelled for Christians and Parsis.