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Is signing multiple copies of a will a good idea?
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Is signing multiple copies of a will a good idea?

| Apr 8, 2021 | Blog, Estate Planning |

Not everyone writes a will, which could lead to complicated hearings in North Carolina probate court. However, some may compose several different wills, ones that are likely future revisions. Signing several copies of the same will might occur. Is it necessary to do this? No, it is unnecessary, and there may be problems deriving from drafting and signing several identical documents.

No reason for more than one signed copy

Once someone signs a legally binding will, the document should be valid in probate court. Creating and signing multiple copies of the same document fails to make sense. It might be easier to photocopy the will rather than create a series of original ones. However, the photocopies allow the testator to hand out copies without worrying about anything happening to the original.

That said, handing out copies of the will to heirs and beneficiaries might not be the best plan. Arguments and other issues may arise when people see the document long before they need to do so.

An attorney may advise clients to sign one copy of an original will and place the document in a safety deposit box or otherwise secure area. Losing the original will could prove far more disastrous than making many copies of one. Without an original will, the law of intestacy will likely govern.

Revising a will

When someone creates a new will and signs it, the new will negates the previous one. So, if someone wishes to revise or make changes, writing and signing a new will becomes the step to take. No matter how many signed copies of the previous will exist, the latest version governs. Destroying older versions might prove advisable.

Mistakes may arise with revising, signing, or composing the wills when following do-it-yourself strategies. Turning out several templates and signing all of them might not be the best estate plan strategy. Without guidance, someone could make such a potentially regrettable decision.

An attorney could assist with estate planning and writing a legally valid will. The attorney may also discuss ways to keep the will safe.

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