A will – also known as a last will and testament – is a written document controlling the disposition of property at death. In both Ohio and Florida, anyone 18 years of age or older who is of sound mind may make a will. It must be signed before two witnesses. A will may be changed or revoked at any time prior to the maker’s death.
A will also nominates the executor of the estate – known as a personal representative in Florida. In administering an estate, the executor must follow the directions contained in the will.
If one dies without a will, or if he has a will that is declared invalid, the person is said to die intestate. A state law, known as the statute of decent and distribution, specifies how the decedent’s property is distributed if there is no will.