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Can texting a will be legally permissible?

Many people in New York use their smartphones to do a variety of tasks. The majority of people probably use their phones to communicate or send photos. However, many also shop, get directions and even make restaurant reservations. Every day new apps and uses for phones come up, and the newest one these days is creating and texting a will -- but only in some states, excluding New York.

Wills have been used for a very long time and laws have changed as the years go by and technology evolves. Still, many people prefer the traditional pen and paper to draft their wills. However, experts have said that 18 states have endorsed the Uniform Probate Code. The UPC provides uniform measures in place of the procedures of traditional probate court, with the purpose of making court proceedings easier and less costly.

The states that use the UPC are more flexible about approving unconventional wills, contingent upon basic requirements. Citing an international case of a will sent by an iPhone, experts said that in order to approve a will that was texted, some things that would be prudent to include would be your name at the bottom and a time and date stamp.

When a will's authenticity is questioned, it comes down to who was there and if they saw the will being signed. Usually, two witnesses are required to assure that the will was signed by one's own choice. However, wills that are sent electronically via text and have no witnesses may only have a chance to be accepted in an area that has more lenient policies.

Source: foxbusiness.com, "Texting Your Will...Will it be Upheld?" Gail Buckner, Mar. 17, 2014

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