Statutory Requirements for a Valid Written Will Interactions

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nicole comes from a very wealth family. Unlike the rest of her family, she has drifted in her life, spending several years in and out of mental institutions. Her family always paid for her treatment. During one of those stays, she was befriended by her roommate, Simone. Simone eventually became aware of Nicole’s financial standing and encouraged her to prepare a will. Given her precarious mental state, Simone convinced Nicole that it was prudent to prepare a will. The will named Simone as the sole beneficiary. Shortly after its execution, Nicole died of an overdose. The will is valid.
True
False
Palmer worked on his family’s farm in Alabama, so he never got the chance to learn to read or write. As such, he needed help with preparing a will. At the execution, he was uncertain how to sign his name, so he just marked an “X” on the signature line. The two witnesses also signed. Three years after executing the will, Palmer died in an accident on the farm. His two sons, the beneficiaries of the will, submitted the will to probate.
Choice 1 The court will accept the will for probate.
Choice 2 The court will reject the will for probate.
Elton decided to prepare his own will. He consulted several books to get an idea as to how it should be prepared. After he was finished, he asked two of his neighbors to witness his signature. Several weeks later, Elton decided he wanted to add a few provisions to the will, which substantially changed his wishes. Accordingly, he typed another page with those provisions and stapled it to the rest of the will. Five years later, Elton died and his executor submitted the will to probate.
Choice 1 The court will reject the entire will.
Choice 2 The court will accept the entire will.
Choice 3 The court will accept only those provisions that appear before Elton’s signature, rejecting the last page.
Bill makes a will, leaving almost all of his assets to his wife, Hillary. Bill makes a specific bequest of $10,000 to his neighbor, Monica. His neighbors, George and Monica, serve as the witnesses during the execution of the will.
Choice 1 Both George and Monica are competent witnesses.
Choice 2 Only George is a competent witness.
Choice 3 Neither George nor Monica is competent witnesses.
Choice 4 Only Monica is a competent witness.
Bill makes a will, leaving all of his assets to his wife, Hillary. His neighbors, George and Monica, serve as the witnesses during the execution of the will, but sign the will before Bill. He is standing next to them at the time and signs right after they do.
Choice 1 The will is duly executed.
Choice 2 The will is not duly executed.
Libby was 70 years old when she decided to prepare her will. She had been putting if off for several years because she was still active in the company she had founded 40 years ago. It had grown into a $25 million company, which provided her with the means to acquire a lot of assets. Her seemingly loyal assistance, Tucker, had been with her for 20 years. So, Libby felt comfortable having him assist her with preparing the will. Tucker’s brother, Art, was a lawyer, so she allowed him to prepare the will for her. Libby wanted to leave the bulk of her estate to her children, grandchildren and favorite charity. Tucker and Art assured Libby that the will did just that. However, Tucker was the sole beneficiary. At the time of the execution, Libby was too busy to actually read it; she just hurriedly signed it, along with the witnesses.
Choice 1 This is an example of fraud in the inducement.
Choice 2 This is an example of fraud in the execution.
Libby was 70 years old when she decided to prepare her will. She had been putting if off for several years because she was still active in the company she had founded 40 years ago. It had grown into a $25 million company, which provided her with the means to acquire a lot of assets. Her seemingly loyal assistance, Tucker, had been with her for 20 years. So, Libby felt comfortable having him assist her with preparing the will. Tucker’s brother, Art, was a lawyer, so she allowed him to prepare the will for her. Libby wanted to leave the bulk of her estate to her children, grandchildren and favorite charity. Tucker and Art assured Libby that the will did just that. However, Tucker was the sole beneficiary. At the time of the execution, Libby was too busy to actually read it; she just hurriedly signed it, along with the witnesses. Two years later Libby dies.
Choice 1 The probate court will accept the will for probate.
Choice 2 The probate court will fully invalidate the will.
Choice 3 The probate court will substitute Libby’s children, grandchildren and favorite charity into the will instead of Tucker.
Skylar had been a widower for 10 years before he met Candace, who was 30 years his junior. They married six months after meeting. Reluctantly, Skylar’s children, Timothy and Kendall accepted Candace into the family. Shortly thereafter Skylar had to have surgery for lung cancer. Before his operation, Skylar signed a will naming Candace as his sole beneficiary. This new will replaced an old will that named Skylar’s children as the beneficiaries. Skylar dies. Timothy and Kendall contest the will, citing undue influence.
Choice 1 Candace wins the case.
Choice 2 Timothy and Kendall win the case.
Choice 3 The probate court will reject the will; Skylar’s assets pass pursuant to the intestacy statutes.
Mia and Antoine recently prepared wills. Most of the provisions in both wills were similar. Each left his or her property to the other person. By mistake, during the execution of the wills, they signed each other’s will. No one caught the error. Six months later, Antoine dies.
Choice 1 The court will probate Antoine’s will, although Mia signed it.
Choice 2 The court will probate the will signed by Antoine, Mia’s will.
Choice 3 The court will probate neither will.
Melanie is in the process of preparing her will. She decides to leave her personal residence to her daughter, Ursula. She wants to leave her beach house to her daughter, Melody. She plans to leave the residue of her estate to her nephew, Joseph. When the lawyer prepares the will, he inadvertently left out the provision for Ursula. Melanie did not notice this omission when she executed the will. Nine months later, Melanie dies.
Choice 1 Joseph is entitled to the personal residence.
Choice 2 Ursula is entitled to the personal residence.
Choice 3 Melody is entitled to the personal residence.
Melanie is in the process of preparing her will. Initially, she decides to leave her personal residence to her daughter, Ursula. However, upon further reflection she decides not to. After all, Ursula already has a home out-of-state; Melanie knows she would not be interested in her old house. She wants to leave her beach house to her daughter, Melody. She plans to leave the residue of her estate to her nephew, Joseph. When the lawyer prepares the will, he mistakenly leaves in the provision for Ursula. Melanie did not notice this inclusion when she executed the will. Nine months later, Melanie dies.
Choice 1 Ursula is entitled to the personal residence.
Choice 2 Melody is entitled to the personal residence.
Choice 3 Joseph is entitled to the personal residence.
Melanie is in the process of preparing her will. She decides to leave her personal residence to her daughter, Ursula. She wants to leave her beach house to her daughter, Melody. She plans to leave the residue of her estate to her nephew, Joseph. When the lawyer prepares the will, he inadvertently left out the provision for Ursula. Melanie did not notice this omission when she executed the will. Nine months later, Melanie dies. When the probate court disallows her bequest, Ursula sues the lawyer for negligent drafting.
Choice 1 Ursula wins her case.
Choice 2 Ursula loses her case.
Generosa (age 46) recently prepared a new will. It will supercede a will she prepared in 2002 that left all but $1.5 million of her estate to her now estranged second husband, Danny (age 40). Her first husband, Ted, was bludgeoned to death in their home in East Hampton (Danny is a suspect in that murder). The new will appoints the nanny of her 13-year-old twins, Kathryn, as guardian, giving her a $1 million gift and lifetime free use of the East Hampton home. At Kathryn’s death, the home (valued at $9 million) will pass to her children. The balance of the estate (valued between $34-100 million) will go to her children and a charitable foundation founded by her late husband. Lastly, she bequeathed $250,000 to her mother-in-law, Janet (Danny’s mother). Danny was excluded from the will because he signed a post-nuptial agreement that waived his rights to a share of Generosa’s estate. As consideration, he received $2 million and a waterfront home in Center Moriches, Long Island. Generosa died last week of cancer. Now, Danny claims that his attorneys “directed him to sign some documents,” one being the post-nuptial agreement. Danny’s waiver is valid.
True
False
Gordon had recently remarried after being a widower for a dozen years. His four children were already grown. His new wife, Tammy, was 20 years his junior. Tammy convinced Gordon that they should both draft new wills. Gordon went to his attorney to draft a new will. Since he had been out of touch with the attorney for several years, he did not know that he had retired. Tammy suggested they use another attorney, Otis, to prepare the wills. Unbeknownst to Gordon, Tammy and Otis had been high school sweethearts. Gordon intended to leave the bulk of his estate to Tammy; he also wanted to include a bequest to his children. The final will excluded any mention of the children; however, Otis had added a $50,000 bequest for himself. Gordon dies. The children contest the will on the ground of undue influence.
Choice 1 The will is valid.
Choice 2 The will is invalid.

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