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Important legal points about a will in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania residents should understand the importance of estate planning. This is true regardless of their financial circumstances. Estate planning should be done whether it is someone who needs substantial asset protection or who simply wants to ensure their possessions go to the family members or heirs they prefer. One aspect of estate planning that might seem simple, but can be complex, is the formulation of a will. There are certain requirements under the law as to the will and its construction.

The will must be in writing and signed by the person creating it - the testator - at the end of the document. When words are written after the signature, it will not make the will invalid for what was written before the signature. This can be before or after it was executed. When the person who creates the will cannot sign it, he or she can make a mark with the name subscribed before or after the mark. This will make it valid just as if the name was signed, as long as it was done with two witnesses who will sign their names in the person's presence.

When the testator cannot sign his or her name or make a mark on the document, the will with the testator's name subscribed while he or she is present and with that person's direction will be valid as if the name was signed. It is required that the testator declare the document to be his or her will with two witnesses who also signed their names in the person's presence.

Creating a will and making certain all of the person's desires are adhered to need not be complicated. However, there are certain rules that must be followed to make sure that the document is valid and there are no issues with having the document enforced.

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