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Wills: A Comprehensive Guide for Kenosha, Wisconsin Residents

Planning your estate is an essential part of securing your family's future. In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss everything you need to know about wills in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Heritage Law Office is here to help you make informed decisions about your estate planning needs. Contact us either online or at 414-253-8500 to schedule a free consultation today.

The Importance of Wills in Kenosha, Wisconsin

Legal Framework for Wills in Wisconsin

In Wisconsin, wills are governed by the Wisconsin Statutes, specifically Chapter 853. These laws dictate the necessary requirements for creating a valid will and how it should be executed.

Protecting Your Assets and Beneficiaries

A well-drafted will allows you to distribute your assets according to your wishes and helps avoid potential disputes among your heirs. It also ensures that your assets are passed on to your chosen beneficiaries, instead of being distributed according to the state's intestacy laws.

Requirements for a Valid Will in Kenosha, Wisconsin

Age and Mental Capacity

To create a valid will in Wisconsin, the testator (person creating the will) must be at least 18 years old and of sound mind. The testator must understand the nature of their property, their beneficiaries, and the legal effect of their will.

Written Document

Wisconsin law requires that wills be in writing, either typed or handwritten. Oral wills are not recognized in Wisconsin.


The testator must sign the will in the presence of two competent witnesses. These witnesses must also sign the will in the presence of the testator and each other.


Witnesses must be at least 18 years old and of sound mind. They should not be beneficiaries of the will, as this may create a conflict of interest.

Types of Wills in Kenosha, Wisconsin

Simple Wills

A simple will is a straightforward document that outlines the distribution of your assets to your beneficiaries. It may also include provisions for guardianship of minor children and the appointment of an executor.

Pour-Over Wills

A pour-over will is used in conjunction with a trust. It directs that any assets not already included in the trust at the time of the testator's death be transferred into the trust.

Holographic Wills

Holographic wills are handwritten wills without the presence of witnesses. While some states recognize holographic wills, Wisconsin does not.

Nuncupative Wills

A nuncupative will is an oral will made in the presence of witnesses. Wisconsin does not recognize nuncupative wills.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Drafting a Will in Kenosha, Wisconsin

Failing to Update Your Will

It's crucial to review and update your will regularly, especially after significant life events such as marriage, divorce, or the birth of a child.

Not Addressing All Assets

Ensure that your will covers all your assets, including real estate, investments, and personal property. Failing to do so may result in unintended consequences for your beneficiaries.

Choosing the Wrong Executor

Select an executor who is trustworthy, responsible, and capable of handling your estate's affairs. The executor should be someone you trust to carry out your wishes and manage your estate efficiently.

Consult an Experienced Kenosha, Wisconsin Wills Attorney

Heritage Law Office is here to help you with all your estate planning needs, including the creation of a will that reflects your unique circumstances. Our experienced attorneys will guide you through the process, ensuring that your will is legally valid and accurately represents your wishes. To discuss your estate planning options with a knowledgeable attorney, contact Heritage Law Office either online or at 414-253-8500 to schedule a free consultation today.

Contact Us Today

For a comprehensive plan that will meet your needs or the needs of a loved one, contact us today. Located in Downtown Milwaukee, we proudly provide legal advice to those in Milwaukee County and surrounding communities.

Milwaukee Office
757 N. Broadway, Suite 300
Milwaukee, WI 53202
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Minneapolis, MN 55104
414-676-2787 (fax)
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