Are you concerned about the validity of a Will in BC? There are five formal requirements for a will in BC. In order for a will to be deemed valid it must meet five requirements, as outlined by the Wills Estates and Succession Act
- The Will must be in writing;
- The Will must be signed by the testator (the deceased person who has written the Will) or by another person in the testator’s name and in the testator’s presence by his or her direction;
- The testator’s signature must be made or acknowledged by him or her in the presence of two or more witnesses both present at the same time;
- The witnesses must sign the Will in the presence of the testator; and
- The testator must be at least 19 years of age unless he or she is married or is in the armed forces.
A will that does not comply with the requirements is invalid unless a Court orders that is effective by way of curing the deficiencies, or it is valid because it was made in accordance with other laws (outside of BC)
Upon meeting these requirements a court will deem the Will to be valid unless someone alleges a lack of testamentary capacity
(mental ability) or undue influence
(i.e. somebody forcing the testator to write and/or sign a Will). If either of these things are alleged, then an executor must prove that the testator had the requisite capacity to make a will and was not subject to undue influence.
If you are wondering if a specific Will is authentic or binding in British Columbia (BC), you can formally challenge the validity of the Will.
We can help challenge the validity of a will or apply to Court to cure deficiencies in a will.