Military Will Lawyers
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What Is a Military Will?
A military will is a will that is created by someone in the armed forces. It makes exceptions to the usual testamentary requirements of a will for service members. Usually, the components and form of a will are dictated by the state the individual lives at the time they create a will. Military wills provide more flexibility and are governed by federal law.
Why Should I Have a Military Will?
Military personnel have a special need for more flexible probate procedures. Military personnel relocate often and may need to deploy to a different part of the country or the world under sometimes dangerous circumstances. As a consequence, to take into account these frequent re-locations and short-notice deployments, the Floyd D. Spence National Authorization Act was signed in 2000 by President Clinton. This Act in part, provides that military wills can be executed using federal requirements rather than state laws.
Under this Act, military wills:
- Are exempt from form, formality, or recording requirements of state probate law
- Have the same legal effect as valid wills that are in accordance with state law
What Are the Requirements for a Military Will?
A military will is considered valid if certain requirements are met:
- Executed by the testator, who must be someone eligible for military assistance
- Will makes a disposition of the testator's property
- Will takes effect at the testator's death
- Witnessed by military legal assistance counsel and by two uninterested witnesses who have signed the instrument
- Statement that the will is a Military Testamentary Instrument
It is also best to provide documentation of the testator's military status and grade with the military will.
Do I Need a Lawyer to Draft a Military Will?
To meet the requirements for the making of a military will, it is best to seek the services of a lawyer who is familiar with military law. Although a civilian lawyer or the use of a form will can help you comply with all legal requirements, the will may not necessarily meet the requirements for a military will and give you the special status a military will is afforded.
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Last Modified: 04-02-2014 02:24 PM PDT
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