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Arkansas Wills Laws

A will is a legally binding document that outlines how the testator (the person to whom the will pertains) would like their belongings divided after their death. A valid will not only gives you more control over your estate, but also will help you avoid the often frustrating, time-consuming, and expensive probate process (where the court decides how your possessions are handled after your death). Most states allow individuals to include a separate list of personal items and their intentions (this can be handwritten), which can also include personal messages to loved ones and relatives.

Overview of Arkansas Will Laws

As in virtually every other state, Arkansas requires testators to be at least 18 years old and of sound mind in order to draft and sign a valid will. Specifically, the state requires two witnesses to be present when the testator signs the will. Nuncupative (oral) wills are not valid in Arkansas, but handwritten (also called "holographic") wills are valid as long as its entirety is written in the testator's own hand and witnessed by "three credible, disinterested witnesses."

Additional details of Arkansas laws concerning wills are listed below. See FindLaw's Making a Will section for additional articles, including What is a Valid Will? and What Happens If You Die Without a Will?

Code Section 28-25-101, et seq.
Age of Testator 18 years or older and of sound mind
Number of Witnesses Two or more attesting witnesses must sign at the request and in the presence of the testator. Testator shall declare to the attesting witnesses that instrument is his will.
Nuncupative (Oral Wills) No
Holographic Wills Valid if entire body and signature is in handwriting of testator and evidence of three credible disinterested witnesses to handwriting

Note: State laws are always subject to change at any time, usually through the enactment of new statutes but sometimes in the wake of higher court rulings or through other means. While we strive to ensure the accuracy of these pages, you may also want to contact an Arkansas estate planning attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

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Arkansas Will Laws: Related Resources

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