last will and testament

A Last Will and Testament is a legal document that allows individuals to distribute property owned by them to specific individuals at the time of their death. However, while this document is incredibly important in ensuring assets and property go to who they are supposed to, there are instances when these documents are revoked, leading to questions about what happens next. To help you better understand these situations, in the below guide, we will go over in detail what happens when a will is revoked in Louisiana and what your legal options are going forward.

Can a Will Be Revoked in Louisiana?

Under Louisiana’s laws, there are certain circumstances where a testator (the will creator) is allowed to revoke a will. These circumstances include the following:

  • When a Will Is Destroyed: If the individual who created the will destroys it or directs another person to destroy it, the will is considered revoked. This destruction can include tearing the will, cutting it up, or even burning it.
  • Executing a New Will: If the individual who created the will executes a new one, the new document will revoke the current will. 
  • Revoking the Will in Writing: If the individual who created the will, identifies it and then revokes it in writing, which needs to be in their own handwriting and signed, the will can be revoked. 

In addition, if there are certain changes to members of the family, the will may be automatically revoked unless the will expressly indicates what will happen when these circumstances arise. For instance, a birth of a child may revoke a will unless the testator provided explicitly for these contingencies. 

What Does a Will Revocation Mean?

In Louisiana, if a will is revoked, it will act as if the will was never created. Consequently, one of two things could happen:

  • A New Will: If a new will was created after the previous will was revoked, the new document will be followed as long as it was valid at the time of the testator’s death.
  • Intestacy Laws Apply: If there is no valid will following a revocation, then Louisiana’s laws of intestacy should apply, and these laws will dictate to whom the decedent’s property will be distributed to.

However, it should be noted that the outcome of succession may be quite different than what the testator wanted for their assets and property. That is why before revoking a will, you should consider discussing the situation with an experienced Louisiana estate planning lawyer. These legal professionals can help make sure you understand what happens when a will is revoked and provide you with the options you have in these circumstances to ensure your future wishes are met.

Contact Losavio & DeJean, LLC Today To Discuss You Estate Planning Options

If you are considering creating a will or want to know more about revoking an older will, reach out to a dedicated estate planning attorney at Losavio & DeJean, LLC. You can also call us at 844.431.5334 to schedule a case consultation and review your questions.