Wills & Estates
Here you will find information regarding both Wills & Estate Services
Indiana’s will law is similar to that of many other states. Two disinterested parties must witness a will for a will to be valid. This means neither witness can benefit from what is given under the will. The individual signing the will and both witnesses must sign in the presence of each other. In other words, both witnesses signing must be present at the same time, on the same day, at the same location.
According to Indiana’s Law of Intestate Succession, if an individual does not have a will in place, their assets will be transferred to next of kin at the time of death. Indiana statutes determine how a deceased individuals' assets will be distributed if they do not have a will set in place.
To sign a valid will, the individual must be of sound mind. Therefore, if an individual has become incompetent, they can no longer sign a will, unless, they would later become competent. A will is also invalid if it is signed under duress.
To revoke a will due to incompetence or duress and after an individual’s death, a separate complaint must be filed contesting the will. The individual who is contesting the will needs to prove that the deceased individual was either incompetent or under duress. If an individual has drafted a will in another state, and moves to Indiana and dies, Indiana will recognize the out-of- state will. Additionally, if an individual drafted a will leaving assets to their spouse, then the marriage is dissolved, as a result of the divorce, the will becomes invalid to that spouse.
The Law Offices of Steven K Deig, LLC have drafted wills for many individuals and has helped clients when a loved one dies by administering the estate for them. If you have questions regarding drafting a will or need assistance in doing so, please contact our office.
Estate administration refers to assisting individuals in distributing assets belonging to a loved one who has passed. Sometimes, it is necessary to administer the assets through the court, and sometimes it is not. This determination is based on the size of the estate. Commonly speaking, if an individual owns less than $50,000 in their name, fewer liens, and encumbrances, it will not be necessary to file papers in court. This saves the heirs money in attorney fees.
If an individual has a will, it does not affect whether the matter has to be administered through the court. If the individual’s estate does not require administration, it is only necessary to file the will with the court; This is called probating the will. A will cannot be filed until after the person who signed it has died. Therefore, it must be kept in a safe place and is usually a good idea to keep it in a safety deposit box at a bank or a fireproof safe in your home. Loved ones should be made aware of where the will is so that they can locate it after death.
The attorneys at the Law Offices of Steven K. Deig, LLC has helped many individuals administer the estates of their loved ones. If you are interested in discussing this type of law with an attorney, please contact us at (812) 477-5577.