Reasons to change a will: Part III

Missouri residents are always advised by experienced attorneys to make a will and to continue to update the various aspects of the will regularly. Such vigilant monitoring often requires the testator to change the existing will at some point. The testator has various options available to that person in order to help explore the various options to change the will legally. Experienced attorneys can often help the testator in such cases.

At the very beginning of the process, one of the simplest ways to change the existing will is to write a new will. However, the testator must ensure that the person declares the old will null and void before making the new will. Attorneys usually accomplish this step by simply putting in a caveat in the new will, which states that all of the terms and conditions of the new will can be enforced and the new will can cancel any earlier will that the testator made. 

However, the attorneys also often recommend that the old will be physically destroyed in order to help eliminate any future contradictions and legal conflicts that may be the result of the existence of multiple wills.

The testator can also consult an attorney to amend the person's existing will. That is known as a codicil. A codicil can amend various stipulations in the will in order to keep the will updated to reflect the changes in the testator's circumstances.

Thus, the codicil can also be used to revoke certain parts of the will. Even though the concept of a codicil sounds good in theory and was the most convenient way to change a will at a time when computers were not involved in the documentation process, nowadays codicils have become a major problem sometimes, which can lead to significant legal problems.

Source: Estate.FindLaw.com, "Changing a will," Accessed on Aug. 18, 2015

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