Last Will and Testament Pen Signing Will Contest | Dallas Estate Planning Lawyer

A Last Will and Testament must meet certain requirements in the State of Texas in order for it to be valid. 

Below are requirements that must be met when creating a Will in our state:

Free will

What does this mean?  It means no one can force you or anyone else to create a Will.  Creating a Will has to be something you decide to do.   Sadly, many older individuals are put in a situation where they have no choice or are forced against their wishes to make changes to their Will.  Someone might make them do so by using emotional or even physical force.  Even though they didn’t want to change the Will, they were made to do so anyway.

Sound mind

Another term used to describe “sound mind” is capacity.  You must have the mental capacity to be able to create a valid Will.  You have to have the ability to reason and make decisions. There are many circumstances that arise in which the elderly are taken advantage.  Their health is failing and their mental ability isn’t what it used to be. A family member, caregiver or other greedy individual might jump on this situation and persuade your elderly loved one to make changes to his or her Will. Often these changes are detrimental to everyone who would have otherwise received an inheritance.

Legal age

Of all the requirements of a Will, this one is the most straightforward.  According to Texas law, if you want to draft a Will, you must be at least 18 years old, or married, or serving in the armed forces.  Not too complicated, is it?


A Will has to be signed by the person who is creating it.  However, someone else at his or her instruction and in his or her presence can sign it. 


A Will also has to be witnessed by two people, at least 14 years of age, in front of a notary.  These witnesses must sign the Will and they must watch the creator of the Will sign it.

Keep these requirements in mind when signing your Last Will and Testament in order to protect your loved ones from the stress and cost of a possible Will Contest.

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If you need to speak to an experienced estate planning attorney please contact us online or call our Dallas office directly at 214.559.7202. We help clients throughout the Dallas area with all of their estate planning needs and look forward to helping you.

Lori Ashmore Peters
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Helping Dallas, Park Cities, Highland Park Texas Area Families with Estate Planning, Probate & Litigation
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