Create your Louisiana Will From the Comfort of Your Home
FindLaw’s easy step-by-step interview guides you to make your will in under an hour. Once your will, also called a “notarial testament,” is completed and signed, it can help to protect your family and property.
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Quick and Convenient Louisiana Wills
When you die without a will, Louisiana follows intestate succession laws to distribute your property. The process, called succession, is known as probate in other states. The court also determines who will be a guardian, called tutor in Louisiana, for your minor children. With a will, you are in control of your property distribution and the guardian of your children.
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Last Will and Testament
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A do-it-yourself last will that’s easy to personalize.
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Estate Planning Package
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All the forms you need to create a personal estate plan.
How It Works
It only takes minutes to control your future. Need help? Contact one of our directory attorneys.
Answer Key Questions
In order to get started, you need a list of your assets, accounts, contact information of important people, and wishes for the future.
Create an Account
Creating an account is easy, quick, and secure. Save your information as you go and return when you have time.
We Create Your Document
We’ve done the hard part by researching and developing your state-specific form. You simply need to follow our clear process.
Print, Sign & Make It Legal
Print and sign your documents according to the instructions. This may include signing in front of witnesses or a notary.
How Do I Make my Louisiana Will?
If you want a will, you can hire a lawyer or use a will form from a reliable source. If you use a form, follow these steps: See full process
List your property and decide who you want to inherit your property
The first step is to categorize your separate property from your community property. Your separate property is the property you acquired before marriage or property given by gift or inheritance to you individually. Community property is property acquired during the marriage.
Your spouse receives all community property if there are no descendants. However, if there are descendants, the surviving spouse gets a life estate or “usufruct” over the community property. “Usufruct” entitles your spouse to enjoy your property and any income from that property for their lifetime. This life estate ends when the spouse dies or remarries.
If you do not have a will, your separate property goes first to your children and descendants. Your spouse will only receive your separate property if you make a will and grant “usufruct” to your spouse.
Choose your beneficiaries
In Louisiana, beneficiaries inheriting under the will are known as testate successors or legates. Your beneficiaries inherit after debts, taxes, and after your spouse and any forced heirs.
You may want to give your separate property to someone outside your family, such as a charity. If so, you must do so under a will or other estate planning tool.
Name your executor or succession representative
Name a guardian or tutor for your children
Print and sign the document in front of witnesses
If you can read and are physically able to do sign your name, you can sign your notarial testament in front of two competent witnesses and a notary. If you do not have those abilities or are blind or deaf, you must follow other requirements for making a will valid. It is critical to sign each page and at the end of the testament. Additionally, you will want to declare to a notary and 2 competent witnesses that the notarial testament is your testament and have them witness your signature.
You May Want To Speak With a Lawyer if You:
- Have a past divorce, blended family, or other complex family situation
- Have a high-value estate
- Own a business
- Want to create a special needs trust
- Want legal review of your completed will
Ready to get started on your Louisiana will? It’s free to start.Create My Will
Louisiana Will FAQ
You can find many “free” forms and templates online. However, boilerplate forms do not address complex Louisiana statutes for property disposition. Louisiana has strict requirements for the writing and signing of notarial wills. Make sure your will is tailored to your needs and you take the steps to make it legally valid in Louisiana.
FindLaw is not a law firm, and the forms are not a substitute for the advice or services of an attorney. If you have specific concerns about your will, consider contacting a Louisiana estate planning lawyer to review your document.
As your circumstances change, you may want to change your executor, guardian, or beneficiaries. You can change your will by revoking it and drafting a new one. The benefit of using FindLaw is that we save your will. So, if you ever need to make a change, simply update the document, and have two witnesses and a notary witness your signatures on the new will.
Louisiana has strict requirements for executing a will. First, you must be able to sign your name, read, and are physically able to do both. Second, you must sign in front of two competent witnesses and a notary. Third, you must acknowledge to them that this is your testament. Then you must sign your will at the end and on each separate page of the will.
Louisiana has laws regarding “forced heirs.” In Louisiana, you cannot disinherit children under the age of 23 or adult children with mental or physical disabilities such that they cannot support themselves. If you have forced heirs, you must give a portion of your estate to those children. However, any portion given to a forced heir is subject to your spouse’s life estate or “usufruct.”
While a will is essential, it is only part of a complete estate plan in Louisiana. In addition, you should plan for what will happen if you can’t make financial or medical decisions due to an extended illness or incapacity.
A power of attorney, called a mandate in Louisiana, is a document that gives your agent, or mandatary, the authority to manage your finances and your property.
A medical power of attorney, or health care power of attorney in Louisiana, allows you to name an agent to make medical decisions for you.
An advance directive, also called a living will, appoints a healthcare agent to follow your wishes for end-of-life care.
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