Holographic Will Law and Legal Definition

A holographic will is one that is entirely written, dated, and signed in the handwriting of the testator (person making the will), rather than typewritten or printed. In some states, holographic wills are not required to be signed by witnesses in order to be valid to pass property. Courts have been lenient in trying to figure out some holographic wills when questions arise, but judges will not rewrite a holographic will to make it valid. A holographic will is probably the most risky do-it-yourself estate plan because of the lack of guidelines involved.

In order for any holographic will to be valid, it must meet the following requirements:

  1. testamentary intent,
  2. testamentary capacity,
  3. formality, and
  4. free from undue influence, fraud, mistake, or duress.