Hello, my name is Andy Fowler. I’m an attorney with Fowler St. Clair. Today I want to talk about estate planning specifically, I want to talk about holographic wills.
I get asked the question all the time, “Can I just go and write on a piece of paper and put it in my drawer and that be recognized as a valid will?” And the answer is, maybe.
It depends on how you do it. Arizona recognized two types of wills: Formal Wills & Holographic Wills Formal wills: Arizona law has specific requirements on the formation of a valid will. 1. It requires two witnesses. 2. It must be signed. When it’s signed it has some formation requirements for it to be valid. Holographic Wills: Arizona law, however, recognizes what’s known as a holographic will. But the statute recognizing a holographic will is very specific on what that will has to look like: It must be handwritten. Notice I didn’t say type-written and print it out. It has to be handwritten. And it has to be signed by the testator (the person making the will). Invalid holographic wills: If you print out or type out a will and sign it without the formal requirements of witnesses, it is not a valid will. It has to be in handwriting and signed by the testator for it to be a valid holographic will. Obviously, as a practice pointer, the better approach is to have an entire will drawn up rather than just drawing it on up a piece of paper. But those (holographic wills) will be valid if they follow the formal requirements. If you have any questions about estate planning feel free to give us a call. Fowler St. Clair Attorneys in Arizona 480-788-9911