Wills
Iowa Last Will and Testament
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Iowa Last Will and Testament

By 

Jennifer Mcgee

Head of Legal at TrulyWill

You may think that making an Iowa last will and testament is something that you should do if you have a large estate. However, it is crucial even if you have a house or a few other assets. You wouldn't want your family house or an important heirloom to end up in someone else's hands. It should go to your loved ones who would value it and remember you after you pass away. Also, you could secure your kid's and family's future by carefully dividing your estate and money. They could use it to carry on with their lives rather than spending long hours at the court or with lawyers. Create your Iowa online last will now and secure your family's future. 

If you live in Iowa, here's what you should follow.

Table of contents

1. Requirements for an Iowa Last Will and Testament  

2. Who can be your witnesses?

3. Iowa rules for a personal representative

4. Iowa Last Will and Testament Notarization

5. Last Will Revocation rules

6. Last Will Amendment rules

7. Iowa rules for divorce after making your last will

8. What happens if you don't have a will in Iowa?

9. Last Will and Testament Iowa free template

Requirements for an Iowa Last Will and Testament 

  • Written will: An Iowa last will and testament must be on paper to be legal. It cannot be audio, video, or other digital file forms. Iowa doesn't allow handwritten wills.
  • Must be of at least 18 age. A person can also make an Iowa will if they are or were married, even if they're not 18.
  • Sound mind and memory: The testator for an Iowa last will must understand the will procedure, nature of their estate, and beneficiaries. For their last will to be valid, they must have a sound mind and memory.
  • Signed by the testator: To make it legal, you must sign your Iowa last will and testament before your two witnesses.
  • Signed by the witnesses: You must have at least two witnesses for the will. They should acknowledge and sign the will before you.

Who can be your witnesses for an Iowa Last Will and Testament? 

Your witnesses for an Iowa last will must follow these conditions:

  • They must be at least 16 age.
  • Iowa allows anyone competent to become a witness. 
  • They should be able to testify about what they saw and the will-making process.
  • It's better not to select beneficiaries as witnesses as they could lose the estate portion or any gift you leave them.

Iowa rules for a personal representative or an executor 

Choosing an executor for your Iowa last will would be better than leaving it to uncertainty. However, an executor should follow these guidelines to be eligible for the role:

  1. Must be at least 18 or above
  2. Capable of performing the job, i.e., of a sound mind.
  3. Iowa doesn't restrict people convicted of a felony from being executors.
  4. Iowa allows you to choose someone out of state as your executor if you appoint an in-state co-executor. 

Last will and Testament Notarization in Iowa

There's no need to notarize your Iowa last will and testament. However, you should add a self-proving affidavit to the last will to speed up the probate process. Here's how you can do that:

  • Find a notary public to make a self-proving affidavit for the will. 
  • You and the witnesses must go to the notary and sign the affidavit, stating who you are and that you know you're signing a will.

Iowa Last Will Revocation 

You could follow any of the following methods to revoke your Iowa last will and testament:

  • Destroy your last will by tearing, burning, obliterating, and shredding.
  • Asking someone to destroy the last will before you and two witnesses 
  • Making a new legal will that revokes any part or the entire previous will.

You must perform the revocation in front of two witnesses.

Iowa Last Will Amendment Rules 

If you wish to make some minor and simple changes to your Iowa last will, you can do it through a Codicil. It will allow you to introduce changes to your existing will and avoid revoking it.

However, you must follow the same guidelines to make a legal codicil as for an original will. If you want to make multiple amendments, it's better to make a new will that revokes the previous one.

Iowa rules for divorce after making your last will

  • Iowa law revokes any gift you leave to your spouse.
  • Revokes any appointment of your spouse as the trustee or executor 
  • However, the provisions will stand if you state otherwise in your Iowa will.

What happens if you don't have a will in Iowa?

Case

What happens 

Has children, no spouse 

Children inherit everything 

Has a spouse, no children 

Spouse inherits everything 

Has a spouse, has children 

(Children you share with that spouse)

Spouse gets everything 

Has a spouse, has children 

(At least one child is with someone other than that spouse)

Spouse gets one-half of your real estate and at least one-half of your personal estate (their share should be worth at least $50,000)


Children inherit the balance 

Has parents, no children, no spouse 

Parents get everything 

Has siblings, no parents, no children, no spouse 

Siblings get everything 

Last Will and Testament Iowa Free Template

You can quickly create a simple estate plan by downloading a Last Will and Testament Iowa free template. It will be the best option if you don't have a large estate or complicated finances. You could check out the template and follow the necessary requirements to make your new Iowa last will and testament. Once you go through the details and follow the required steps:

  1. Connect on TrulyWill and create your account.
  2. Discuss any issues or complications about your finances and personal relationships with our attorneys.
  3. Sign or notarize the document, depending on your state requirements. 

This template and sample last will and testament would allow you to examine what your will would look like. You can change the will template depending on your personal preferences for estate distribution. 

Some instances where it would be prudent to consult our experts before finalizing your will would be when you have a high net worth or complicated family and personal relationships. We also provide additional services for those unique requests:

  • Online expert support: You can connect with our experts online and clear your doubts.
  • Attorney support: For some specific and unique requirements, we also offer additional attorney support services for your will and trust.

If you're facing any of these issues, it's essential to consult an expert before proceeding. They could personally help you out with any doubts and create a solid and legally enforceable Iowa last will and testament. 

How can TrulyWill help with an online Will and Testament? 

TrulyWill is the perfect option to create a hassle-free online last will. You could go to the platform from your home's comfort and make your online will and testament. Online wills are a straightforward process; you should opt for them rather than spend hours in a lawyer's office. Furthermore, the process is pretty simple; you just add details, review for mistakes, read the guidelines, and download. That's it!

What else can TrulyWill do?

TrulyWill helps fulfill your varying needs for a will. You can opt for a simple last will and testament online or seek professional help. We offer everything from one-on-one legal support to solve your will issues.

Furthermore, you could opt for a trust-based plan depending on what suits you better. TrulyWill can help you figure out the process and help avoid substantial legal fees. So, you should go to the platform and get your online will in just a few minutes. 

Got Questions?

Hi, I’m Jennifer McGee.

Co-founder & Head of Legal at TrulyWill

Feel free to book a call with me to help you with your estate plan.

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Do I need to have a certain amount of money to make a will?
No, there's no minimum limit of money you need to have to make your last will. It would dispose of any assets you leave to the beneficiaries.
How should I store my will?
You should always store your last will and testament in a safe place, one which is accessible to your loved ones and doesn't pose any risk to the documents. It can be a safe locker or a safe in your home.
Does my will dispose of all my assets?
A will would only dispose of the assets mentioned in it. You could decide which assets go to whom. However, it's always better to mention all your assets.
Can I decide who would look after my minor children in my will?
Yes, you should name a person as the guardian of your children in your will. It would help avoid any hassles, and they could look after your kids after you pass away.
Can an executor or guardian refuse to take up the role?
Yes, your guardian or executor can refuse to take on the job. It is always better to ask the person and get their approval before mentioning them on your will.
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