How to Write a Will in Arkansas

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There are two types of wills; a living will and a last will. To write a will in Arkansas you must be at least 18 years old and have two witnesses present who are also at least 18 years of age. The witnesses must not be beneficiaries named in your will. The will must be typed unless you are writing a holographic will in which some sections are handwritten and a witness is not needed, however, it is more difficult to prove the validity of a handwritten will, so typing is encouraged.

Last Will

Include your name, burial information and how your finances will pay any debts. List any charities you would like to donate money or personal possessions to.

List all beneficiaries of your possessions. Start the statements with "I hereby bequeath my..." and follow with each item and to whom you are giving it to.

Include who you want to give your estate to starting with "I hereby bequeath the remainder of my estate to..." and list the person or people. Don't forget to describe what powers they will have as well. In case a beneficiary passes away before you do, add a contingent beneficiary who will receive your possessions instead of them.

Choose a guardian to take care of your children, if any, and designate an executor or a personal representative to handle your debts and manage the distribution of your property after you are deceased if you prefer.

Living Will

Create a living will to express your wishes in case you become terminally ill or permanently unconscious and cannot make decisions. This includes whether or not you want to participate in life-sustaining procedures.

Hand write the declaration and sign at the end. It must also include the signature of a witness who is more than 18 years of age. This person cannot be your medical care provider, operator of care facility, or power of attorney for health care, nor can they be beneficiaries named in your will.

Create a health care proxy, if desired, that will give someone else the right to make decisions for you. In most cases, this form is signed at the same time as the will.


  • If you choose not to have a will, your assets will be divided among your immediate family. If you have children it will all go to them. If you are married for more than three years, your spouse will receive your entire estate. However, if you are married less than three years your spouse will get half. If you are not married or are without children, your parents get all your possessions.


  • If you need to update or change your will you can create a new one or add an addition which is called a codicil.


About the Author

Melissa O'Connor has been writing professionally since 2010. Her work has been published on various websites, including Her writing focuses on topics in design, photography, history, living green and healthy cooking. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in graphic design from Jersey City University.

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