What is a self-proving will?

A self-proving will is a will that permits a probate court to accept it as the genuine will of the deceased person. In California, a will is proved and is admissible to probate provided that it was properly prepared and executed according to California law by an adult. At the time that the will was signed, the adult must have had testamentary capacity, and must not have been under any undue influence.

Thus, all wills are deemed self-proved if they are correctly signed and executed by the testator and witnesses. If there is no contest regarding the validity of the will, the probate court will usually accept it without requiring the testimony of witnesses. A self-proving will eliminates the need for witnesses and beneficiaries to have to appear in court to declare that the will is valid.

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