Anyone of legal age and sound mind can make a last will and testament. Legal age varies by state:
- In 48 states, a will-maker must be at least 18 years of age.
- In Louisiana, you can make a will at 16
- In Georgia, you can make a will as early as 14
- Many states make provisions allowing those younger than 18 to write a last will if they are married, economically independent, or a member of the armed forces.
Mental competence is an essential factor in making sure your will is legally binding. Being mentally competent means that you know you are executing a last will, and are familiar with your property as well as your family and descendants; the famous line from movies is "being of sound mind and body".
Witnesses are also required to sign the last will, and one of their functions is to validate your mental well-being.If you anticipate that the will might be contested based on mental incompetency, take extra steps like getting a doctor's assessment at the time of the signing of the last will.
- How to write a will
- What is a living will?
- Will vs. Estate Plan
- Find more information about wills
- Start your will today
This article contains general legal information and does not contain legal advice. Rocket Lawyer is not a law firm or a substitute for an attorney or law firm. The law is complex and changes often. For legal advice, please ask a lawyer.