What is a will?

What is a will?

Ans:-A testamentary document by which a person bequeaths his property to be effective on his death is a will.

The property will devolve on the person in whose favour it is bequeathed after death of testator.

Who can execute a will?


Any person above the age of 18 years and mentally sound may execute will, but the will caused by fraud or coercion or by forcefully is not valid. Therefore a will must be executed voluntarily.

Parents or guardians cannot execute will on behalf of minors or lunatics.

Attestation by minimum two witnesses is necessary.

Scribe (deed writer / advocate) cannot be called witness. Two independent attesting witnesses other than the scribe are necessary.

Beneficiary under a will should not sign as attesting witness.

In order to avoid disputes in implementation of a will, description of property and the beneficiaries should be clearly written without giving room for any doubt.

No stamp duty is required to be paid. Will can be drafted on a white paper.

Is it compulsory to register a will?

Ans:-It is not compulsory to register. Executants may register at his option. It is better to register the will. If original is lost a certified copy can be obtained from Sub- Registrar Office.

Where can a will be registered?

Ans:-It can be registered in any office of the District Registrar/Sub Registrar Office of India

Is there any time limit to register a will?

Ans:-There is no such time limit. It can be registered at any time after its execution.

Can a will be cancelled?

Ans:-The testator can cancel his will at any time during his lifetime.

Can a registered will be rectified or cancelled?

Ans:-If executant of a will wishes to rectify, change the content by way of addition/deletion of any recital in the original will may do so during his lifetime. This is called codicil. This document does not require any stamp duty.

Can a will be registered even after the death of the testator?

Ans:-Yes, claiming party under the will have to produce will, records relating to the death of the testator, witnesses and the scribe before the Sub Registrar. If Sub Registrar is satisfied about the truth and genuineness of the execution of the will, he will register. There is a procedure called “will enquiry” to be followed by the Registrar/Sub Registrar to register a will presented after the death of the testator.

What is the stamp duty and registration fees for registration of a will?

Ans:-There is no Stamp duty on will deed. For registration of will during the life time of the testator Rs.100 Registration fee prescribed + User Charges applicable. To register the will after the death of the testator Registration fee of Rs.100 and enquiry fee including batta, processing expenses at actual will be collected.

Is a certified copy of will available to everybody?

Ans:-A certified copy of a registered will is available to the testator only during his lifetime. After his death anybody can obtain after producing proof of death of testator.

How to keep contents of a will confidential?

Ans:-Will can be deposited in a sealed cover in office of the District Registrar. A fee of Rs.500-00 prescribed to deposit will in a sealed cover. Depositor or authorized person (executor) can withdraw the sealed cover containing a will, if desires to do so.

What is the procedure to obtain sealed cover containing a will after the death of the depositor?

Ans:- On making an application along with proof of the death of the depositor, District Registrar will open sealed cover in the presence of the applicant and it will be registered. Certified copy will be issued if desired. A fee of Rs.100-00 prescribed to open a sealed cover.

What is the procedure for effecting mutation of the property got through a will?

Ans:- After the death of the testator, person claiming through the will have to apply to the concerned authorities along with the copy of the will and death proof.

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