Estate planning can be a lot to take in all at once. There are a lot of concepts involved, but the easiest way to get through the process is to take it one step at a time.
Let’s take a closer look at the different types of wills available to California residents.
3 types of wills are valid in California
According to the Superior Court of California, there are three types of wills in California: Attested Wills, holographic wills, and statutory wills. Here’s a little more about each:
- Holographic Wills: These are handwritten by the testator and usually do not have any witnesses. Holographic wills can be legally valid, but generally only if the testator’s handwriting can be proven by witness testimony. They may also fail to comply with California law in other ways, and confusing or contradictory content can render them invalid.
- Statutory Wills: These wills follow a pre-printed form and must adhere to California law in order to be valid. These types of wills are easy to fill out but do not offer much flexibility. Statutory wills also require the signature of a minimum of two witnesses and are vulnerable to attack based on their validity.
- Attested Wills: These are wills that have been prepared by an attorney These wills are preferred because they are generally clear, legally correct under the state’s laws and are considered “self-proving,” which makes their validity less of a question.
Although California has gone to great lengths to make the process of creating a will as simple as possible, it can be difficult to fully understand the issues that may face your estate without legal guidance. Don’t leave your estate plans vulnerable by trying to manage alone.