A New York Last Will and Testament is a document backed by the state that allows an individual, referred to as a Testator, to declare their wishes in regards to how they would like the items of their estate distributed after their death. New York protects these documents with the Estates, Powers, and Trusts Section of New York Law which state that a Testator must be at least 18 years old and be of sound mind and memory. Furthermore, these statutes specify that wills written in New York must be signed by the Testator in the presence of two (2) witnesses. New York also has provisions for alternative forms of wills. Nuncupative Wills, commonly known as Oral Wills will be recognized in New York, however, these wills may only be created by a member of the military while on active duty during a time of war or armed conflict. The state will also recognize Holographic Wills, commonly known as Handwritten Wills, but the same restrictions that are placed on Nuncupative Wills are also applied toward Holographic Wills.
Completing a last will and testament is a straightforward process that allows a person to declare their wishes and rest assured that their named beneficiaries will receive what was left to them. The first thing that the Testator will need to provide is their full name as well as their complete address, which will include their city, state, and zip code. Next, the Testator will appoint an individual they trust to execute their will. After an Executor has been named, the Testator will then declare their wishes in regards to who will receive what portion of their assets. These wishes may specify a percentage, an amount, or a particular item that the beneficiary will receive; it is completely up to the Testator. Once all of the Testator's wishes have been documented, he or she will sign it and have two (2) attesting witnesses sign it so it may take effect.