You can create a will in Indiana to accomplish the following tasks and goals:
- Leave your assets to the people or entities of your choice.
- Designate an executor to carry out your will and manage your estate.
- Name a guardian to provide care for your children.
But you cannot just write up any document and assume the probate court will uphold it. You must adhere to Indiana probate laws to ensure your will is valid.
Mental capacity and age
The first requirement to creating a will is being of sound mind. Generally, this means you must understand what you own, the purpose and consequences of the will and to whom you are leaving your belongings. If there is doubt about your mental capacity, someone may challenge the validity of the will once you pass away. You can prove you are of sound mind in various ways, such as gathering medical records or recording the signing of the will.
Additionally, in most cases, you must be at least 18 years old. Younger people can create wills if they are members of the armed forces.
Writing and signing
Unless you make an oral will, which is only permissible if you are at imminent risk of death, you must create your will in writing. In order to finalize the document, you must sign it in the presence of two witnesses, or acknowledge that your signature is already in the document. Then, you must watch the two witnesses sign the will in your presence.
This is educational information about the basic requirements of creating a will in Indiana. It is not legal advice.