What’s the right format & formalities to be followed, when drafting a will?

If you’re seeking a suitable last will and testament format in India, you will easily find it online. There will always be plenty of scope online to chance upon a reliable standard format of will and act accordingly. As a result, you can make your will yourself without having to rely on any legal professionals or outside help. Simply do it yourself (DIY) online with expert guidance on the format and legal terminology to be used, in order to make sure that the will is worded suitably and will not give rise to future disputes between family members and other beneficiaries.

When it comes to creating a will, you already know that this is the declaration/ statement which does not require any stamp paper or stamp duty, while registration/ notary is not compulsory as well. You can use a simple will form online, and then type or handwrite your will on plain paper with instructions given clearly, that’s been signed by you in the presence of two witnesses. The will document should have the entire details about you, your spouse, living parents and children, along with information about your jointly/ singly held properties and wishes for wealth distribution, in tandem with the names of two witnesses.

Typed wills are always better and the language should be simple and easily understandable. Your liabilities can also be covered in the will, along with your assets. Nowadays, many people consider making a video recording of the signing of the will, in the presence of two witnesses. You may also appoint your executor who can be any Professional or Company providing executorship services or a family friend or any trusted individual, to take action based on the wishes contained in the will. This is however, not compulsory.

Here are a few other things to keep in mind while drafting a will:

  • Assets to include movable/ immovable property, cash, jewellery, fixed deposits, bank accounts, insurance policies, furniture, vehicles, share in HUF, antiques, paintings, electronics, pets, fixtures, intellectual property, books and other belongings, share in company/ business, etc
  • Mention all loans/ liabilities in the will along with the assets
  • Guardians can be nominated for minor children who are the beneficiaries, and will protect their interests until they come of age
  • Beneficiary is the individual to whom you will be bequeathing/ distributing your assets through the will. Any individual, trust, charitable organization, company, firm, society, etc. can be the beneficiary of a will
  • The legal heir is someone who is rightfully entitled to succeed to the properties of the deceased person, based on the personal succession law that is applicable

To know more, please write to us at iwill@icicisecurities.com