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We found a will 26 years after my sisters death.. it is typewritten , witnessed by two people, but not notarized. is it valid

Baton Rouge, LA |

one of my sisters has kept it hidden for 26 years in her safe..the will made me executor and /or this sister. i knew nothing about it..

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Attorney answers 2


Depending on the laws of the state where the will was executed, it is - most likely - valid. The notarization is generally used for the purpose off authenticating the will. Otherwise,, one of the witnesses may need to go to court (or some other arrangement) to verify that the will was signed by the decedent in the presence of the witnesses. 26 years after death to begin an estate administration. Please consult an attorney for advice.


Under current law, this will is not valid. Notaries are not simply a rubber stamp under Louisiana law, rather, civil law notaries provide the function of "proving" a document. However, this will was executed 26 years ago before the succession laws were rewritten. You will need to find an attorney who knows the old laws about wills. There were several different types that were valid under the old laws.

You should find an attorney who has been practicing at least 10 years. We have 2 attorneys in our office who have each practiced for over 20 years. Call our office if you need further assistance.

This answer does not establish an attorney-client relationship, Moreover, this attorney is Licensed to practiced law ONLY in LOUISIANA and answers to questions from other jurisdictions or states are meant to provide only general information. Users should contact a local attorney in their jurisdiction or state.