When a will is "holographic," it means that the will was handwritten and/or unwitnessed. This means that the testator may have written the will by hand in his or her own handwriting, and then signed the will without proper witnesses. Alternatively, the will may have been typed up and signed, but not in front of proper witnesses.
When you are creating an estate plan, you might realize that you have to create trusts to get the assets disbursed in the way you want. Once you come to this realization, you will have to determine what type of trust you need to establish. This is a big decision that you need to make, because different trusts have different purposes and offer different protections.
You know that quote that starts with, "The best-laid plans of mice and men..."? This quote can be used to describe a lot of Illinois residents' estate plans. Many estate plans are well-intentioned but, at the end of the day, they lay in waste and ruin and never serve to carry out the original goals of the person who created the plan.
The legal term "testamentary capacity" refers to the capacity of an individual to draft a will for him or herself. When someone lacks testamentary capacity, a court will render any will that he or she drafted and signed is not valid. A minor, for example, who is under the age of 18, does not have testamentary capacity to draft a will. Nevertheless, in some circumstances, if the minor is married or in the military, he or she might be able to legally formulate a will.
You might be surprised to discover that 6 out of every 10 adults in the United States has yet to create an estate plan. According to Caring.com -- just 4 out of every 10 American adults have drafted a will or living trust.
Imagine that you want to provide money and income to a specific beneficiary in your estate plan; however, you want to ensure that additional assets will be available to someone else after the first beneficiary dies. For example, maybe you want your spouse to benefit from your estate, but you want the core of your estate to be inherited by a child after your spouse passes away.
A mutual will is a common estate planning tool that governs the estate of more than just one person. Usually, the people who enter mutual wills with one another are married couples or couples who are in seriously committed relationships.