Does a handwritten codicil need to be witnessed?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Does a handwritten codicil need to be witnessed?

My father passed away 11 months ago. He had a Will which was witnessed by 2 people in 2012. However in Dec of 2016 he wrote a so called codicil. The reason I say so called is that he wrote at the top of the page ‘add to my living will’. He didn’t say add to my Will. He also had no witnesses. I question his state of mind at the time of his writing his paper and I think he was confused by his Living Will and His last will and testament.

Asked on November 13, 2018 under Estate Planning, Arizona


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  In the state of Arizona you can indeed have a handwritten (or holographic) codicil and it does not need to be witnessed.  So if it is what they say it is, on its face it could be seen as legal.  But what I think that you are saying is that your Father was not competant at the time he executed the alleged codicil and that is where your challenge may lie.  You need a copy and you need to seek legal help.  ASk about undue influence as well. Good luck.

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