Different Types of Wills?

By Martin Brieger, Site Editor.

All Wills should be typed instead of handwritten and written by a person who is over 18 and of 'sound mind'.  An executor must be listed to manage the Will and the document must be signed, dated and witnessed by a certain number of people for it to be legal. 

There are four basic kinds of Wills:


  • Simple will

Most often used when simple assets need to be distributed from the estate to the beneficiaries.


  • Testamentary Trust Wills

Includes provisions that place a portion of your estate into a trust and a trustee controls those assets and distributes them to your beneficiaries.


  • Joint Wills

Usually used by spouses who intend to leave their assets to each other in case of death. The surviving spouse inherits everything and when they die, they leave the remaining estate to a person of the couple’s choosing. This will cannot be revoked once the first testator dies. 


  • Living wills

The purpose of this kind of Will is completely different from the previous three. A living will provides detailed instructions about medical treatment or life-saving measures you do or do not wish to be used in case you are incapacitated and unable to communicate those wishes personally.



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