Estate-planning attorneys are very familiar with the rigid formalities of both making and executing a valid will. Wills are different from any other legal documents in this regard because even a minor and seemingly innocuous error in the process of executing the will can invalidate it despite the testator’s very clear wishes. The historical rationale for these formalities was to prevent fraud and undue influence and to underscore the seriousness of a document that disposes assets at death.
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