At What Age can you Create a Will?
Am I Too Young for a Will?
Making a Last Will and Testament can sound so…final.
For many people, especially those on the younger end of the spectrum, a will is as far down the list of fun things to do as getting a cavity filled. That being said, having a will at any age can save your loved ones a whole heap of headaches should the grim reaper come calling at any time.
So, at what age can you legally start the process? Good question, and one we can answer for you right here!
Minimum Age Requirements
In the United States, the legal age one can make a will in most states is 18, with a few notable exceptions. Louisiana allows 16-year-olds to create a will on their own behalf. In Georgia, the will-maker can be as young as 14, so long as they meet a few requirements such as possessing the mental capacity to know what they own, understanding what it means to leave possessions to beneficiaries through a will, and being able to recognize family members. Additionally, there are exceptions in several states who make provisions for under-18’s who are married, in the armed forces or are financially independent.
Why do it?
Creating a will is a responsible thing to do at any age, and easy to do if using wills.com, especially if you have any assets. Boring, but true. It saves your loved ones from the hassle and heartbreak of having to divide up your possessions on their own, especially when you consider they will also be grieving over you.
It also pre-empts potential nastiness. It stops your mother and sister from cat-fighting over that painting Granny gave you that they both covet. You can decide who you want to have it, and if the other is angry…so what? You won’t be there anyway!
Even if you don’t think you have any assets to consider, you probably do. Cars, heirlooms, savings, and digital belongings such as photos, music collections, blogs, video games, and PayPal accounts all have to be accounted for.
A will can also ensure a favorite charity, or your best friend gets what you’d like them to have. If you die without a will, legally called intestate, your assets will usually go to living parents unless you are married or have any children. This simple precaution ensures loved ones all get a remembrance of you.
A Few Other Things to Know
Before you can make a will that is valid in the eyes of the law, you need to be “of sound mind and body.” Yup. That’s a real thing in the real world. Mental competence is crucial. This is typically verified by the witness(es) on hand who attest to your being compos mentis.
Also, once you’re one of the dearly departed, your privacy no longer counts. Therefore, it would be best to not put anything in a will that you wouldn’t be comfortable with others seeing.
Creating a will with wills.com is a fast, inexpensive, and easy way to have your bases covered “just in case.” So go ahead, take a few minutes and take care of business!