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Are Oral Wills Valid

Oral wills are known
as "nuncupative" wills. Such wills are valid in about half of the
states, including Mississippi. In order to be valid, the
"nuncupative" will must be expressed during an individual’s last
illness, and if the bequest exceeds $100 in value, must be proven by 2
witnesses. Additionally, the individual's death must be within 6 months of the
oral declaration in order to be valid.


In short, while
technically such a deathbed oral will may be valid, it would be imprudent to
rely on such a will except as a last resort. In addition to the strict limiting
requirements, the other difficulty in enforcing such an oral will is the
potential for uncertain or varying memories of the decedent's oral expression.
A handwritten, or "holographic" will is preferred over the
nonpunitive wheel.

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