Free Colorado Last Will and Testament



What is a Last Will and Testament?

A Colorado Last Will and Testament is a crucial instrument that specifies the way your assets or estate will be divided when you perish. The one who leaves a last will is known as testator. After they die, they may also be called the decedent. When the decedent has minor children, the Last Will and Testament might also be used to indicate someone they want to take care of their children and who they wish to manage their children’s inheritance and funds until eventually each child becomes an adult (typically 18, but it is possible to designate a different age) to handle their finances by themselves.

A Colorado last will and testament is an essential document for all those who wish to ensure that their assets and loved ones are taken care of after their death.

This document allows you to appoint a personal representative who will carry out your final wishes according to the instructions you have provided.

If you die without a last will and testament, your assets will be distributed according to Colorado law, which may not be in accordance with your wishes. Therefore, it is important to have a valid last will and testament in place to protect your loved ones and your assets.

Legal Requirements for Last Wills in Colorado

If a person wants to establish their rules for the inheritance of property and rights after their death, they need to use a Last Will. In Colorado, using this form, a testator can appoint a certain person(s) to fulfill their will, divide movable and immovable property between them, and appoint a guardian for minor children. The local law also allows citizens to assign responsibility for a pet, if necessary (the period of care is up to 21 years).

In order for your last will and testament to be valid in the state of Colorado, it must meet the following requirements:

  • The document must be in writing
  • The document must be signed by the testator (the person who is making the will) 
  • The document must be signed by two witnesses (with them having signed the will within a reasonable time after they witnessed the testator’s signing of the document) or by a notary public or another individual authorized by law
  • The witnesses (or a notary public) must also sign the document

If you do not meet these requirements, your last will and testament will not be considered valid in the state of Colorado. Therefore, it is important to ensure that your document meets all of the requirements before you have it notarized.

Benefits of Having a Last Will and Testament in Colorado

The laws of Colorado strictly define the rules of inheritance of a person’s property after their death. The rights to the deceased’s property pass to the spouse, and if the spouse is not alive, the descendants get it. Meanwhile, the spouse must divide the property between the parents and the descendants of the deceased. The law may not coincide with the wishes of a person who wants to dispose of his property differently after death. That is what a Last Will is for.

When it comes to estate planning, a last will and testament is one of the most important documents you can have. This document allows you to specify how you would like your assets to be distributed after your death. Without a last will and testament, state intestacy laws will determine how your assets are distributed, which may not be in accordance with your wishes.

A last will and testament can also be used to name a guardian for your minor children. If you die without a last will and testament and you have minor children, the court will appoint a guardian for your children. The court may not appoint the person you would have chosen, so it is important to specify your wishes in a last will and testament.

Creating a last will and testament is generally a simple process and does not require the assistance of an attorney. However, it is important to make sure that your last will and testament is valid and meets all legal requirements. If your last will and testament is not valid, it may be challenged in court and could be overturned.

Some of the benefits of having a last will and testament include:

  • Allows you to choose how your assets will be distributed after your death
  • Can name a guardian for your minor children
  • Is generally a simple and inexpensive process
  • Ensures that your wishes will be carried out after your death

If you don't have a last will and testament, it's important to create one as soon as possible.

Colorado Law Requirements for Filing a Last Will

In Colorado, the testator’s relatives or appointees must file a testament within ten days of the testator’s death. Then the court considers the will and makes a verdict on the distribution of the deceased’s property. Uncontested property passes through an informal will. In cases where the property is contested or executed under a controversial will, it goes through a formal procedure.

If the total value of the property does not exceed $ 50,000 and also does not contain real estate, the inheritors do not have to use a Last Will to assign rights to this property. In this case, an Affidavit for Collection of Personal Property can be used. One way or another, a court decision is necessary for the distribution of rights. After the person(s) appointed by the testator receives a court verdict, they can dispose of the property and pay the debts, if any.

Restriction on the Action of a Last Will

Even a Last Will dealing with contested property cannot completely override state laws. This is because the inheritance law intersects with other laws, such as IRA accruals, co-acquired property, and the general inheritance act.

In Colorado, the following restrictions apply to testaments:

  • The spouse of the deceased will receive the jointly acquired property if it has the status of the right of survivorship

  • $ 26,000 goes to the spouse of the deceased; if they are not alive, the descendants distribute this amount among themselves

  • Retirement income passes to the beneficiaries regardless of how this point is defined in the testament.

Changing and Revoking a Testament in Colorado

If a person wants to change their Last Will, they write an amendment to the original document, which specifies other terms for inheritance of property. To completely cancel the current will, there are two ways. First, a testator can create another document of the same type, which contains different conditions and cancels the previous one by its presence. Second, they can destroy the document themselves or ask another person to do it. Under the Colorado laws, both ways eliminate the current terms of property inheritance.

Last Will Forms for Neighboring States

How to Fill Out a Colorado Last Will and Testament

Step 1 - Who are you?

Start with your full legal name and address. If you have a middle name, be sure to include it. You'll also want to list your occupation, so there's no question about your identity later.

Step 2 - Who will serve as your personal representative?

Your personal representative is the person who will be responsible for carrying out the instructions in your will. Choose someone you trust to fulfill this role.

Step 3 - How do you want your assets to be distributed?

In this section, you will need to specify who will receive which assets. You can also include instructions on how you would like those assets to be used. For example, you may want your home sold and the proceeds divided among your children.

Step 4 - Who will be the guardian of your minor children?

If you have minor children, you will need to appoint a guardian who will be responsible for their care if you can no longer do so. This is an important decision, so choose someone you trust to care for your children in the event of your death.

Step 5 - Sign and date the document

Once you have finished drafting your will, you must sign and date the document in the presence of two witnesses. The witnesses must be at least 18 years old and cannot be related to you by blood or marriage.

How to have your Colorado Last Will and Testament Notarized

After you have signed and dated your will, you will need to have it notarized by a notary public if two witnesses didn't sign it. The notary will witness your signature, and they will affix their official seal to the document.

Once your will is complete, you should keep it in a safe place where your personal representative can easily access it. You should also provide a copy to your personal representative and any other individuals you want to be aware of its existence.

Changing or Revoking Your Colorado Last Will and Testament

You can change your will at any time by creating a new document that revokes the previous one. To do this, you will need to create a new document that states that it revokes all previous wills and codicils (amendments to a will). You will then need to sign and date the new document in the presence of two witnesses. The witnesses must also sign the document. Alternatively, the document can be notarized to be considered valid.

You can also revoke your will by destroying the document. If you destroy the document, it must be done so that it is clear that you intend to revoke the will. For example, you could tear it up, burn it, or shred it.

It is important to note that simply making changes to your will does not revoke the entire document. Creating a new document or destroying the old one will revoke your will.