Which is more legally binding a Will or a notarized statement?

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Which is more legally binding a Will or a notarized statement?

Asked on December 31, 2011 under Estate Planning, Alabama

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

This question is difficult to give guidance on with out knowing more about the facts of this matter.  And with out seeing the documents involved.  Wills distribute property of a decedent in the manner in which thy choose.  A notarized statement can be "construed" to be a Will or a Codicil (amendment to a Will) depending on the circumstances involved as well as the wording of the document.  What is given deference in wither situation is the intention of the person who signed both - the testator - but the facts surrounding the matter are important.  Now, there can be situations where a Will leaves a piece of property to some one but then the testator subsequently sells the property and transfers it by a deed (notarized).  The property would then be non existent when the testator passes - i.e., not part of his estate - so the person inheriting it wold be out of luck.  Get help from someone in your area.  Good luck.


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