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Will Lawyer Near Me in Golden, Colorado | Handwritten or Holographic Wills in Jefferson County

by | Nov 15, 2019 | Estate Planning |

Are holographic or handwritten wills a good idea for estate planning in Wheat Ridge? Click here to find out!

A holographic will in Golden, Wheat Ridge and Jefferson County is a will that is handwritten by the person signing it. Recently, these types of wills made the national news when singer Aretha Franklin passed away and her handwritten wills were found months after her death. In her case, there were three separate handwritten documents found, some of which contradict the others. Now, the court is tasked with determining which, if any, will be deemed valid. This is the main issue with holographic wills – their validity. Let’s take a closer look at holographic wills and some of the roadblocks they can create.

Arvada Holographic or Handwritten Wills

In Colorado, holographic or handwritten wills are allowed, but only if specific criteria are met. It’s common for these types of wills to only have the signature of the person writing the will, with no confirmation signatures from a witness or notary. In these cases, the court can still recognize the will as long as portions of the will are handwritten and it can be verified that the signer is the one who wrote it. Colorado law also allows for documents not specifically designated as a will, but the writer intended it to serve that purpose to be used as a will. The document has to be submitted to probate court and the person submitting the document must prove that the signer intended the document to be used as a will. In order for a holographic will to be valid, it must comply with all Colorado laws. If the handwritten will contains requests or information that does not comply with the estate laws of the state the will was written in, then it will not be accepted.

Issues with Holographic Wills in Wheat Ridge

Jefferson County and all Colorado Courts carefully scrutinize holographic wills because they are much more difficult to prove that these are the true wishes of the signer. The handwritten (not typed out) aspect can be a hurdle as well, as often we use technology to write documents and just sign it at the end. This would likely not fly in this situation. A holographic will definitely makes the probate process more complex and will likely take longer to get through. Basically, unless there are some real extenuating circumstances, it’s best to go through the process of formally creating a will and estate plan. This will make sure that everything in your will is legal and that your wishes will be honored.

If you are ready to create your estate plan and will, contact the best attorneys from the Pearman Law Firm at 720-259-9528 for a free initial phone consultation.

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash