Uniform International Wills Act
(1) As used in this section:
(a) “International will” means a will executed in conformity with subsections (2) to (5) of this section.
(b) “Authorized person” and “person authorized to act in connection with international wills” means a person who by subsection (9) of this section, or by the laws of the United States including members of the diplomatic and consular service of the United States designated by foreign service regulations, is empowered to supervise the execution of international wills.
(2)(a) A will is valid as regards form, irrespective particularly of the place where it is made, of the location of the assets and of the nationality, domicile or residence of the testator, if it is made in the form of an international will complying with the requirements of this section.
(b) The invalidity of the will as an international will does not affect its formal validity as a will of another kind.
(c) This section does not apply to the form of testamentary dispositions made by two or more persons in one instrument.
(3)(a) The will must be made in writing. It need not be written by the testator. It may be written in any language, by hand or by any other means.
(b) The testator shall declare in the presence of two witnesses and of a person authorized to act in connection with international wills that the document is the will of the testator and that the testator knows the contents thereof. The testator need not inform the witnesses, or the authorized person, of the contents of the will.
(c) In the presence of the witnesses, and of the authorized person, the testator shall sign the will or, if the testator has previously signed it, shall acknowledge the signature.
(d) If the testator is unable to sign, the absence of that signature does not affect the validity of the international will if the testator indicates the reason for inability to sign and the authorized person makes note thereof on the will. In that case, it is permissible for any other person present, including the authorized person or one of the witnesses, at the direction of the testator, to sign the testator’s name for the testator if the authorized person makes note of this on the will, but it is not required that any person sign the testator’s name for the testator.
(e) The witnesses and the authorized person shall there and then attest the will by signing in the presence of the testator.
(4)(a) The signatures must be placed at the end of the will. If the will consists of several sheets, each sheet must be signed by the testator or, if the testator is unable to sign, by the person signing on behalf of the testator or, if there is no such person, by the authorized person. In addition, each sheet must be numbered.
(b) The date of the will must be the date of its signature by the authorized person. That date must be noted at the end of the will by the authorized person.
(c) The authorized person shall ask the testator whether the testator wishes to make a declaration concerning the safekeeping of the will. If so and at the express request of the testator, the place where the testator intends to have the will kept must be mentioned in the certificate provided for in subsection (5) of this section.
(d) A will executed in compliance with subsection (3) of this section is not invalid merely because it does not comply with this subsection.
(5) The authorized person shall attach to the will a certificate to be signed by the authorized person establishing that the requirements of this section for valid execution of an international will have been fulfilled. The authorized person shall keep a copy of the certificate and deliver another to the testator. The certificate must be substantially in the following form:
1. I, _________(name, address and
capacity), a person authorized to act
in connection with international wills,
2. certify that on _________ (date)
at _________ (place)
3. (testator) _________(name, address,
date and place of birth) in my presence
and that of the witnesses
4. (a) _________(name, address, date
and place of birth)
(b) _________(name, address, date
and place of birth) has declared that
the attached document is the will of
the testator and that the testator
knows the contents thereof.
5. I furthermore certify that:
6. (a) in my presence and in that of the
(1) the testator has signed
the will or has acknowledged
the testator’s signature
*(2) following a declaration
of the testator stating that
the testator was unable to
sign the will for the following
I have mentioned this declar-
ation on the will, *and the
signature has been affixed by
_________ (name and address)
7. (b) the witnesses and I have signed
8. *(c) each page of the will has been
signed by ________
9. (d) I have satisfied myself as to
the identity of the testator and
of the witnesses as designated above;
10. (e) the witnesses met the conditions
requisite to act as such according
to the law under which I am acting;
11. *(f) the testator has requested me
to include the following statement
concerning the safekeeping of
the will: _______________
12. PLACE OF EXECUTION
14. SIGNATURE and, if necessary, SEAL
*to be completed if appropriate
(6) In the absence of evidence to the contrary, the certificate of the authorized person is conclusive of the formal validity of the instrument as a will under this section. The absence or irregularity of a certificate does not affect the formal validity of a will under this section.
(7) An international will is subject to the ordinary rules of revocation of wills.
(8) Subsections (1) to (7) of this section derive from Annex to Convention of October 26, 1973, Providing a Uniform Law on the Form of an International Will. In interpreting and applying this section, regard shall be had to its international origin and to the need for uniformity in its interpretation.
(9) Individuals who have been admitted to practice law before the courts of this state and are currently licensed so to do are authorized persons in relation to international wills.
(10) This section may be referred to and cited as the Uniform International Wills Act. [1981 c.481 §2; 1993 c.98 §2]
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