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WE ARE PROUDLY MALAYSIAN
DID YOU KNOW?
Only 2 million people, or about 28% of the total 7 million people of the working population in Malaysia, have a Will
- The Star Newspaper, 18 June 2019
What is a Will ?
A Will is basically a legal document which states who will inherit your assets after your death. Take care of your loved ones by planning your legacy today. Create your own Will online, it is 100% free!
How does the generator work
Thanks to technology, creating your very own basic will, requires no more than a few taps on the keyboard. In just 3 easy steps, you can rest easy that you have future proofed your assets and interests.
You need a will as it allows you to administer the distribution of your assets. You are free to choose your beneficiaries who will inherit your assets and determine their respective shares in your assets.
If you don’t write a will, everything you own will be shared out in a standard way defined by the law – which isn’t always the way you might want it to be.
In short, the importance of having a will is to express your wishes on how your assets should be distributed upon your death and to avoid lengthy and costly court processes. You may also express other wishes, for example, who must take care of your children or the family business after you are gone. If you have a will, upon your death, your executor will just need to apply for a grant of probate (less than 3 months) and start distributing your assets thereafter.
You should make a will at any moment in your lifetime but you are encouraged to make one as early as possible if you own any property, money etc that you would like to distribute according to your wish upon your death.
The best time to make one is when you are young, fit and healthy because one of the legal requirements of a valid will is that you must be of sound mind when you are creating it.
Anyone can make a will as long as they are at least 18 years old and above (West Malaysian and Sarawakians) and 21 years old and above (Sabahans) and have testamentary capacity (sound mind).
If you do not have a will upon your death that means you died intestate, the consequences are as follows:
- All of your assets (including your bank accounts) will be frozen until your case is settled. Your next-of-kin will need to apply for a Letter of Administration (LA) from the High Court to appoint an Administrator. Once the LA has been obtained, the Administrator will be the one to handle your assets and the assets will be distributed according to the manners set out in the Distribution Act 1958;
- The distribution process will take longer time and cost more money (6 months to 1 year), as it also requires a bond and the appointment of 2 sureties to guarantee the proper administration of the assets as well as a court order to effect the transfer of real property;
- It will be stressful as your loved ones will be left with uncertainties while trying to sort out your assets;
- Your children’s wellbeing may not be properly taken care of;
- There is a high chance of family dispute over your assets;
- Your assets will be distributed according to the law in a way that is not always what you wish.
If you die leaving behind:
Distribution Act 1958
Spouse only (no parents/child)
Spouse – whole assets
Child only (no parents/spouse)
Child – whole assets
Parent(s) only (no spouse/child)
Parent(s) – whole assets
Spouse & Parent(s) (no child)
Spouse – 1/2
Parent(s) – 1/2
Spouse & Child (no parents)
Spouse – 1/3
Child – 2/3
Parent(s) & Child (no spouse)
Parent(s) – 1/3
Child – 2/3
Parent(s), Spouse & Child
Parent(s) – 1/4
Spouse – 1/4
Child – 1/2
No Parents, Spouse and Children
Siblings – equally
No Parents, Spouse, Children, Siblings
No Parents, Spouse, Children, Siblings, Grandparents
Government of Malaysia
The decision as to whether to update or re-write your will depends very much on the change in your life circumstances and whether such change is adequately provided for in your existing will. Acting too late may mean your changes are no longer appropriate or even immediately invalidated.
You may consider re-writing or updating your will in any of the following circumstances:
- Marriage, separation, divorce or re-marriage;
- When you are having your first child or planning for adoption of a child;
- Death of a family member or other beneficiary of your assets;
- When you wish to amend the proportion of distribution;
- When your appointed executor or guardian dies or is unable or unwilling to act as such;
- When you decide to name someone else as your executor, trustee or guardian;
- When there are significant changes to your financial situation;
- When the size and value of your assets change significantly;
- When there are changes on probate or tax laws that could affect your assets.
It is up to you as to where you want to keep your will. However, you are advised to keep your original will in a safe place. You may also engage the services of a will depository to secure your will. It is important to let your appointed executor know where to find and retrieve your original will upon your death.
If the will is lost when you are alive, you can always write a new will. Your latest will has the effect of revoking the old one. You should also pass a photocopy of the new will to your executor.
If the original will cannot be located after your death, your executor can still apply for a grant of probate using a photocopy of your will if it is proven that the original will is lost or destroyed without your intention to revoke the will. As a general rule, the courts will require your original will before allowing a grant of probate.
No, stamping is not required.
There is no expiry date. Your will is valid once it is executed until it is revoked or replaced by another will. Will is automatically revoked when you marry, re-marry or convert to Islam. It takes effect upon your death and will remain valid until it is challenged successfully by others in court.
Your will can be challenged on any of the following grounds:
- Your signature is forged;
- You are under unsound mind or under undue influence at the time you made the will; or
- The signing of your will was not properly witnessed.
No, you do not need a lawyer to prepare your will although an experienced lawyer can provide useful advice on estate-planning strategies. As long as your will meets the necessary legal requirements, it is valid and it does not matter that it was not drafted by a lawyer. However, it is advisable to seek legal advice if your situation is more complex, for example:
- you have large and complex assets;
- you have some planning for your children or dependents where you may want to set up a testamentary trust;
- a less straightforward manner of distribution;
- unusual family condition or situation.
Beneficiary means a person who is entitled to inherit your assets upon your death. You are free to choose who or which organisation you wish to leave your assets to. You should not name your witness or a spouse of your witness to be your beneficiary, otherwise your will be invalid. If you are married, you are obliged under the Inheritance (Family Provision) Act 1971 to make reasonable provision for the maintenance of your spouse, unmarried daughter, infant son, or a child under disability. If any of the said persons are omitted from your will, they can apply to the court for maintenance orders. Please take not that a pet cannot be a beneficiary to your will.
You should consider appointing a guardian when you have a minor child or children. He or she will take care of your child/children until he/she/they reach 18 years old if you and your spouse are both dead. You should appoint someone you can trust such as your sibling or a close friend and you should inform him or her of about this appointment. If you do not appoint a guardian and you and your spouse are both dead, the court will decide who will take care of your children.
Anyone who is above 18 years old, of sound mind and not a beneficiary to your will. The law requires two witnesses to attest your will for it to be valid and effective. Preferably, your witnesses should be young enough to outlive you as their role is to testify that they were there to witness you signing your will in their presence in the event there is a challenge made to your will.
In Malaysia, insurance policies and EPF contributions do not form part of your estate in your will. Your will does not and will not override any beneficiary nominations that you have submitted to your insurance company or Employees Provident Fund (EPF). This means that monies payable from your insurance policies upon your death shall be distributed to the beneficiaries you have previously submitted to your insurance company. Likewise, monies from your EPF contributions shall be distributed to the beneficiaries you have previously nominated. So please take note that in addition to creating your will, you must also nominate your beneficiary(s) by informing the same to your insurance company and EPF.
Just before we start.. Take note!
Please get ready the following information:
- Your personal details.
- Name and NRIC/Passport No. of Executor, Legal Guardian and Beneficiaries
- Assets details (e.g. list of properties, bank accounts, and other assets such as bonds, shares, vehicles).
Read and Sign
Before you sign:
- Read through your Will carefully.
- Only sign if you are satisfied that it reflects your intentions and wishes.
- If you have any question, please consult a professional lawyer or will writer.
- You must find 2 witnesses.
- Your witnesses must be above 18 years old and are of sound mind.
- Your witnesses must not be a beneficiary under your Will or a spouse of a beneficiary under your Will.
- You should sign and date your Will in the presence of 2 witnesses in the same session.
- Sign your name on each page of your Will.
- Get your witnesses to sign and date accordingly in your presence.
- E-signature for Will is not recognised under the existing law.
Keep It Safe and Update Regularly
After you sign:
- Seal your Will and keep the original signed copy in a safe and accessible place.
- You should notify your Executor of the location of your Will and give them a copy of your Will if you so wish.
Update Your Will:
- You should update your Will when you get married, have children, divorce or go through major life changes.
- Do not attempt to amend your Will by adding, crossing out or modifying the content of your existing Will.