How to Make Changes to Wills in Georgia

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If you live in Georgia, you may make changes to your will by executing a codicil. A codicil must comply with Georgia law regarding will formalities. In other words, a codicil requires a mentally competent "testator," or will maker, and two mentally competent witnesses to be valid in Georgia.

Type your codicil. Include a heading that indicates it is your codicil, such as "Codicil to the Last Will and Testament of John Doe." Type your full name, the county where you reside and the state -- Georgia. Include that you intend for the document to serve as a codicil to your current will and include the date of your current will.

Read More: How to Amend a Will Without a Lawyer

Describe with specificity which provisions you're changing. Refer to the section numbers in your will for additional clarity. If you're adding an entirely new bequest, describe what it is in detail and to whom you're leaving it.

State that you intend for the provisions of your current will to remain the same, except for those amended by the codicil.

Choose two witnesses. Georgia law requires your witnesses to be competent and at least 14 years old. Sign your codicil and date it in front of your witnesses; have each witness sign and date your codicil in front of you and immediately after you've signed it.

Attach the codicil to your current will or keep it with your will. A lost codicil can create difficulty and confusion for family members and the probate court.

Warnings

  • Generally, a codicil is only suitable if you're making minor adjustments to your will. If your goal is to substantially change your will or to amend several provisions, you may want to consider executing a new will that explicitly revokes your current will.

    You may type your codicil's provisions; however, your signature must be in your handwriting. Your witnesses' signatures must also be in their handwriting.

Tips

  • Georgia law allows for self-proved codicils. A self-proved codicil includes notarized affidavits of the testator and witnesses; this prevents your witnesses from having to testify as to your codicil's authenticity.

    You can have your codicil self-proved as you're executing it or afterwards.

References

About the Author

Andrine Redsteer's writing on tribal gaming has been published in "The Guardian" and she continues to write about reservation economic development. Redsteer holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of Washington, a Master of Arts in Native American studies from Montana State University and a Juris Doctor from Seattle University School of Law.

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