What is Will and its types?

Date : 2021-06-03

What is Will?

A will refers to a legal document through which a person can express his/her wishes regarding the distribution of the assets after his/her death. A testator is a person who makes a will. After the death of a testator, the assets can be transferred in two ways, either through a will i.e. testamentary of the person, and if there is no will, the assets shall be transferred as per the provisions of law of succession. It is defined under Section 2 (h) of the Indian Succession Act, 1925. Will Registration India is not mandatory, however it is advisable to register a will with the Registrar’s office.

Types of Will:

There are various kinds of will and they are as follows:

1. Unprivileged Will: A will created by a person who is not a soldier employed in an expedition or engaged in actual warfare or a mariner at sea is known as unprivileged will. The following conditions must be satisfied for an unprivileged will:
* The signature or mark of the testator.
The person who creates the will must sign or affix a mark.
The witnesses (two or more) should attest the will in the presence of the testator.
2. Privileged Will: It refers to the wills that may be in writing or orally by those in active services like a soldier, airman or mariner. The following conditions are applicable for this will:
The testator writes his own will (handwritten)
The testator should sign this will written wholly or partly by another person, and attestation is also not required.
A will written wholly or partly by another person and not signed by the testator is valid if proved that it was drafted under the directions of the testator.
An incomplete will is also considered valid if it is proved that non-execution was due to another reason and is not with intention to abandon the will.
A privileged will can be made orally also.
In case a soldier or airman or mariner declares will orally but dies before it is prepared or executed, that such will is valid.
3. Conditional or Contingent Will: A conditional or contingent will valid only if the condition or contingency has happened and if does not happen or condition fails then the will not be valid.
4. Joint Will: It is a kind of will wherein two or more people agree on making a joint will. The will would not be enforceable if it intends to take effect after the death of both the parties. Any co-testator could revoke the will.
5. Concurrent Will: it is a kind of a will, written by one person to divide his/her assets in two or more ways. For instance, if the testator wants to make a will for movable property and one for immovable property.
6. Mutual Will: In this kind of a will, testators confer upon each other’s benefits, example, in case of husband and wife.
7. Duplicate Will: the name itself suggests that the testator creates duplicate will for safety purposes with the bank or executor or trustee. However, if the testator destroys the will in his custody, then the other will is revoked.
8. Sham Will: they are executed but held invalid if not executed as per the wishes of the testator.
9. Holographic Will: It is a kind of will that a testator writes completely in his own writing.
10. Pour Over Will: It is advised for the people who already have an established trust and put their assets in it. A pour over will allow for these additional assets to "pour over" into the trust upon the person's death so that they are distributed according to the terms of the trust.
11. Living Will: This kind of will tells the wishes of the testator in the case he/she is incapable in taking a decision. It also designates a decision maker, as no one can spell out all possible potential complications one might encounter while incapacitated.

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