What Are Holographic Wills In Texas

Robert Ray

A holographic will is a handwirtten will. It must be wholly in the handwriting of the testator. He can not type it or print it. None of the words that make the document a will can be typed, printed or written by someone else.

A signature by initials is sufficient to execute the holographic document as a will, if it is testamentary in character, and it need not be dated. 862 S.W.2d 8. Since a date is not required, if some else writes the date, the will is still valid because the date is not part of the testamentary character of the document. 01-15-00855-CV; 69 S.W.2d 1107. A holographic will does not need to be witnessed while a typed or printed will does need to be witnessed.

In one case, a Texas court found that the proponent of the holographic will did not prove that it was wholly in the handwriting of the testator when one part was printed by hand rather than be in cursive writing. In that case, the alleged holographic will was written out except for the name of the person who was the beneficiary of the holographic will. The name N.L. Phillips was printed. The rest of the will was written out in cursive. Two witnesses to the will said that they recognized the cursive writing as that of the testator but neither one could say whether or not the name N.L. Phillips whcih was not in cursive was the testator’s printing because they were not familiar with his printing.  410 S.W.2d 202.

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Robert Ray

Robert Ray handles inheritance disputes of all kinds. He takes cases throughout Texas.
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