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Tennessee Last Will and Testament

Tennessee Last Will and Testament


Jennifer Mcgee


Updated on  

January 3, 2023

9 mins


Wouldn't it be better if your loved ones had all the necessary information about who would inherit what after you pass away? There wouldn't be any quarrels or disagreements about what to do. Everyone could move on with their lives peacefully without worrying about going to court. That's why making your Tennessee last will and testament is crucial. You cannot take charge of this uncertainty, and the only thing you can do is prepare for it. Making your online last will would be an essential first step.

If you live in Tennessee, here is what you should follow.

Requirements for a Tennessee Last Will and Testament 

  • Written will: A Tennessee last will and testament must be on paper to be legal. Tennessee doesn't allow audio, video, digital, or electronic wills. Tennessee accepts self-written or holographic wills.
  • Must be of at least 18 age 
  • Sound mind and memory: The testator for a Tennessee 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 Tennessee 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 within a reasonable time. 
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“Should have done this before, had made it up to be really hard in my head. This was super easy!”

Tennessee rules for an oral will

Tennessee state allows oral wills if these conditions are fulfilled:

  1. The testator should be on their deathbed or in imminent peril.
  2. You must state and communicate your last will to two disinterested witnesses. 
  3. The witness should put the oral will on paper within 30 days and submit it to the probate court within six months of your death.
  4. The testator can only dispose of their personal estate up to $1,000. They can dispose of up to $10,000 if they're in active air, naval, or military service. 

Who can be your witnesses for a Tennessee Last Will and Testament? 

Your witnesses for a Tennessee last will must follow these conditions:

  • A Tennessee witness can be anyone who is generally competent for the job.
  • They should be able to testify about what they saw and the will-making process.
  • You can select beneficiaries as your witnesses in Tennessee, but they would lose their estate portion or gift.

Tennessee rules for a personal representative or an executor 

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

  1. The executor must be an adult.
  2. Capable of performing the job, i.e., of a sound mind.
  3. Tennessee restricts people convicted of a felony from being executors.
  4. Tennessee allows you to choose someone out of state as your executor. However, you must name another in-state executor, and your non-resident executor must appoint the secretary of state as the agent.

Last will and Testament Notarization in Tennessee 

There's no need to notarize your Tennessee 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.

Tennessee Last Will Revocation 

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

  • Destroy your last will by tearing, burning, obliterating, and shredding.
  • Making a new legal will that revokes any part or the entire previous will.
  • Making a document stating the revocation of the last will. 
  • If you marry and have a child after creating a will, your previous will would be revoked. 
Last will and Testament Tennessee 

Tennessee Last Will Amendment Rules 

If you wish to make some minor and simple changes to your Tennessee 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.

Tennessee rules for divorce after making your last will

  • Tennessee 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 Tennessee will or remarry your ex.

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


What happens 

Has children, no spouse 

Children inherit everything 

Has a spouse, no children 

Spouse inherits everything 

Has a spouse, has children 

Equally shared among the spouse and children 

(Spouse's share cannot be less than one-third)

Has parents, no children, no spouse 

Parents get everything 

Has siblings, no parents, no children, no spouse 

Siblings get everything 

Last Will and Testament Tennessee  Free Template

You can quickly create a simple estate plan by downloading a Last Will and Testament Tennessee 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 Tennessee 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 Tennessee last will and testament. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

What would it cost me to make a will?

Depending on your location and estate, the cost varies between $500 to $1000 if you hire a lawyer. However, you can use the TrulyWill platform to create a legal and valid will at a fraction of this price.

What would happen to my estate if I had no immediate family?

If you create a will before you pass away, your estate will go to the beneficiaries you've mentioned. However, if you die without a will, it could go to your extended family or even the state if there are no relatives.

Can I write down my wishes and consider them a legal will?

Several states do not allow a self-written will unless you've followed the requirements. It would always be better to create a legal will by following all your state rules.

Do I need a lawyer to make my last will and testament?

There's generally no need to get a lawyer to make your will. You could use an online platform and easily make it within minutes. Only some special cases, like complex family relations, may require you to consult an attorney.

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.
Jennifer Mcgee
Parent to five young children. Expert in Estate Planning, Probate, and Family Law Matters. Volunteer with Victim’s Advocates in the local sheriff's department...
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Jennifer Mcgree
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