What is a ‘valid’ will?

>A valid will is one that has been accepted by a court and put into effect by a grant of probate. To be valid, your will must be:

  • In writing – handwritten, typed or printed.
  • Signed – ideally your signature should be at the end of the will.
  • Witnessed – two witnesses must be attest or acknowledge your signature on the will. These witnesses must also sign the will in your presence. These witnesses do not have to be present together at the time they sign.

If your will is not made in this manner it may not be enforceable. The court has the authority to grant or not to grant probate (confirm that the will is valid). If the will is not probated, your property could be distributed at the discretion of the court. The court must comply with the distribution set forth in a properly executed will.