If a witness on a Will did not see testator sign, is it still valid?

I am contesting the Will presented by an unrelated party after the death of my wife’s brother. The witnesses on the document were friends of my brother-in-law and the document was not notarized. An investigator looked into the circumstances surrounding the signing of the Will. One witness refused to answer any questions, the second witness stated that he did not witness my brother-in-law sign the Will (he says it was already signed when he arrived).

Asked on November 9, 2011 under Estate Planning, Massachusetts

Answers:

Henry Lebensbaum / Law Office of Henry Lebensbaum

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Then it is a problem but may not be fatal, and you should contact an attorney.

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Under the laws of all states in this country, a Will of a person is required to be personally witnessed by two disinterested people. If the Will that you are talking about was not witnessed by two disinterested witnesses, the Will is not a valid Will and can be contested.

From what you have written, the Will you describe may not be valid. Good luck.


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