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Writing a will by hand is possible, but does present a risk

When you are ready to write out your will, you need to make sure that the will you have is legally enforceable. In Indiana, this means that you shouldn't use a handwritten will, which is known as a holographic will, because these aren't considered valid in this state. This isn't to say that you can't write out your will be hand. If you do, you are running the risk of it not being considered a valid will.

There are some specific points that wills must address when they are created. Just to be clear, the fact that your will is written by hand won't necessarily mean that it won't be followed; however, you must ensure that it meets all of the other requirements for wills in this state.

One of these points is that the fact that it is a testamentary document must be clearly expressed. There is a lot of legalese that is used to get this point across in wills, but you can do this in a concise manner in your will. The main factor here is that the document must clearly state that you are providing instructions about what to do with your property when you die.

In addition, your will has to be created when you are capable of understanding the intent of the will. It must be signed by you and it has to be witnessed by two people who aren't involved in the will at all.

Even though it might seem easy and tempting to jot down your will on a piece of paper by hand, this really isn't a good idea. Instead, you should have your will drafted by someone who is familiar with current Indiana laws and can help ensure it is legally binding.

Source:, "Handwritten wills are risky," Christopher Yugo, June 18, 2017

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