Missouri law outlines the requirements for creating valid wills in the state. As long as people make certain that the wills they draw up follow those rules, the documents will generally be deemed valid by the court after they die.
Wills must be signed in the presence of witnesses in order to be valid. To make certain that the witnesses won’t have to later appear in court to swear to the validity of the will, people should have them sign self-proving documents in front of a notary public. The testator signs the will and dates it in front of the notary followed by the witnesses. The witnesses must be over the age of 18, and Missouri requires that there be at least two of them.
Wills don’t need to be filed with the court while the testator is alive. Testators should tell the executors they have chosen that they wrote wills and where the wills can be found. A person’s will is valid in any state as long as it was valid in the state in which it was drafted and signed. A person who moves to a new state may want to review the will and make certain it comports with that state’s laws as well.
While people may draft their own wills, they may want to get the help of an estate planning attorney in order to do so instead. An attorney will likely be familiar with the applicable state laws regarding the drafting of valid wills. This may help to make certain the probate court will uphold the will later after the person dies.