Free Massachusetts Last Will and Testament Form

A will is a document that contains the last will of its owner (testator) and determines exactly how and by whom their property will be used in the event of death.

Making a will is an advisable choice for just about anyone who would like to avoid disagreements and confusion. An elaborate and effectively written last will and testament can be important to all your family members and relatives upon your passing, even when you don’t possess lots of estate.

Here, you’ll find a Massachusetts last will and testament form for download and the tips intended to remove your slightest questions pertaining to property planning, different types of last will, and the ways to create a valid document.


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Massachusetts Last Will Laws and Requirements

Requirements State laws
Statutes Chapter 190B – Massachusetts Uniform Probate Code; Article II – Intestacy, Wills and Donative Transfers
Signing requirement Two witnesses Section 2–502. [Execution of Wills]
Age of testator 18 or older Section 2–501. [Who May Make Will]
Age of witnesses 18 or older Section 2–505. [Who May Witness]
Self-proving wills Allowed Section 2–504. [Self–Proved Will.]
Handwritten wills Recognized if witnessed according to the state law Section 2–502. [Execution of Wills.
Oral wills Recognized  if meeting certain conditions
Holographic wills Not recognized Section 2–502. [Execution of Wills]
Depositing a will Possible with a Massachusetts county probate court A fee is $75 Section 2–515. [Deposit of Will With Court in Testator’s Lifetime]

How to Make a Massachusetts Last Will and Testament

  1. Think about your possibilities. Make a decision whether you need to seek the services of lawyers or prepare your last will by yourself (either by handwriting it all or working with a free last will and testament form).
  2. Specify your information. Establish the testator and their particulars: full name and address (city, county, and state). Go over the information you wrote along with the remainder of the section, which includes “Expenses and Taxes.”
    Details indication section of Massachusetts last will template
  3. Designate the executor (or executrix). The next step is to decide on the executor of your last will and testament, the person in charge of ensuring that every little thing you lay out in this document gets done. To do that, you will need to specify the executor’s full name, along with their residence information (city, county, and state). Be sure you appoint a person who resides in the same state as you do. If you don’t, there will be extra paperwork and avoidable hassle involved in the process resulting from different special policies every state has with regards to out-of-state executors. Although it is not required, it’s a good idea to choose one more person to be an executor if the first one is unwilling or incapable of executing your last will.
    Executor choosing section of last will for Massachusetts
  4. Choose the guardian (optional). It’s possible to appoint a trusted person as a guardian in case you have underage or dependent children that must be taken care of. In case there are no instructions concerning who exactly should look after your children, the guardian will be selected by the court.
    Appointing the guardian section of will and testament Massachusetts
  5. Specify your beneficiaries. This is where you indicate those who are going to receive your assets. Fill out their full names, addresses, and your relationship to them (spouse, child, friend).
  6. Allocate assets. Write down your assets and explain exactly how you would like to distribute them to your beneficiaries if you’ve got something planned aside from dividing the property equally. Property can include cash, shares, realty, company control, money for arrearage, as well as any physical items of commercial value you possess. However, joint and living will property and assets, as well as your life insurance, cannot be put into your will.
    Beneficiaries specification and property allocation part of last will forms for Massachusetts
  7. Proceed with the witnesses signing the document. According to Massachusetts General Laws, for a will to be considered legally correct, it has to be signed by two witnesses. You may name a person as a witness provided that they’re over the age of 18 years and are disinterested in your heritage. As a possible additional safeguard against situations when your will is challenged or some other problems, it’s wise to assign a witness who is younger than you to be sure they’ll still be there after you depart this world. After a complete review of every passage in your last will, all signatories (you and your two witnesses) must write their full names and full addresses and sign the will.
    Witnesses signing section of a Massachusetts last will

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Frequently Asked Questions

What's the main difference between 'Power of Attorney' and 'Executor'?

The primary distinction between these two documents is that when you have passed away, the representative you appoint through power of attorney loses their legal authority to take care of any matters in your place.

Among various power of attorney types, the two following ones are considered main:

  • General power of attorney – enables you to name a proxy (agent) who’ll be able to handle your monetary and legal affairs instead of you. But, this document will become void in case the principal passes away or becomes incapacitated.
  • Durable power of attorney – gives the identical rights to the proxy as the previous type but stays effective even when the individual on behalf of whom the agent acts becomes incapacitated.

An executor is a person you assign in your will to manage your matters after you depart this life. It is possible to name one person to act as an attorney-in-fact and will executor.

Is will notarization required by Massachusetts law?

Massachusetts law affirms that a last will can be valid without getting a notary public to authorize it. However, you could make your will self-proving by adding an affidavit to it, and you will need to go to a notary if you wish to make it happen. Making your will self-proving might be a good choice since it quickens the probate and gives another layer of certainty in the event the will’s validity is doubted.

IMPORTANT: Even though notarization is not required for last wills in Massachusetts, signing a will in front of a notary public usually helps facilitate the probate.

Should I opt for an attested or holographic will?

A holographic last will is handwritten. To be valid, this document needs to be completely in the handwriting of the testator, dated and signed by him or her, and witnessed according to the state law. Bear in mind that this kind of a will is typically created when there’s no other option and is normally replaced by a more thorough document made with the aid of a fillable last will form or attorney at law. Holographic last wills can include unclear directions and may leave vital provisions out, so they are harder to enforce and can delay the probate significantly. That’s why it might be a better idea to go with the second solution that we discuss below.

An attested last will is generally typed since it is commonly made by a legal professional or is based on a will form, like the one you may download from us. To be considered valid, it must be signed by the testator and two trusted witnesses older than 18 in the testator’s presence, which can also be done in the presence of a notary public. But, the latter isn’t required in Massachusetts.

What exactly is testamentary capacity?

The testator has to fulfill testamentary capacity requirements in order to create and alter their last will, including being of sound mind.

There’re usually two requirements to meet: soundness of mind and age. In the majority of states, you have to be over 18 years old to create a last will. Soundness of mind ensures that you are conscious of your estate and the heirs of your possessions and fully understand the consequences of your doings.

Does a last will require a self-proving affidavit in Massachusetts?

It isn’t strictly required in Massachusetts. However, in case you decide to include a self-proving affidavit, it’ll be quite beneficial given that the document functions as a substitute for in-court testimony of witnesses during probate.

Is it allowed to disinherit your child or spouse?

If you wish to disinherit your spouse, in Massachusetts, it is allowed. There is not such concept as a community property (also known as marital property). It is a kind of interest documentation provided by the systems of law that claims that 50 % of all properties and assets (along with arrears) of one marriage partner is owned by another and stays such upon divorce.

According to, in 2018, the Massachusetts divorce rate was 7.5 per 1,000 women over 15 years old, which is similar to the average numbers in the USA in the same period.

Massachusetts law permits you to cut your spouse out of your last will and testament completely, but your marriage partner will be admitted of owing a certain minimum number of your assets.

With regard to other members of your family, it’s possible to legally disinherit anybody else. By including certain disinheritance sections to your will, you’ll be able to leave your adult children or other members of the family out from getting any of the properties and assets.

Can my last will be modified without my approval?

No, only you can change your will. There is one particular case when a third party can be involved. If you’re physically incapable of signing your will, a third party can do so in your stead yet only with you present.

Am I allowed to change a typewritten last will and testament after I sign it (in Massachusetts)?

Yes, you can.

In Massachusetts, if you haven’t entered into a contract mentioning the opposite, you’re allowed to repeal or alter your last will at any time.

It’s recommended to revise your will if a major event happens in your life. These include but aren’t limited to:

  • Adoption or birth of a child
  • Divorce or marriage
  • You purchased or sold real estate or a considerable piece of property.
  • Great changes in your financial position

How must I act if my will is lost?

Massachusetts law claims that a will can be admitted if it is lost or destroyed. However, nothing but the initial version of the will can be accepted by the probate court.

In accordance with Massachusetts law, the will’s absence can be regarded as its annulment. That means the trustee will have to prove the will’s legality, which may be very complicated.

Things get a lot more troublesome when considering a holographic last will. To prove its validity, the court will demand testimony and sword witnesses. Other than that, you will also have to provide proof of as to why the last will and testament and its details can’t be provided in a way that will also prove it wasn’t canceled.

What does one have to do in case he or she cannot physically sign their will?

Only per your directive and in your presence is another person allowed to sign your last will and testament (See Massachusetts Estate Code). The person who wrote the will can express his or her wishes in a verbal manner, by answering positively to a question, or with body gestures.

You can get a notary to sign the name of a testator that is physically incapable of doing it in case the latter directs the notary public in the presence of a witness. This witness is chosen the same way one could select a trustee – they mustn’t have any legal or equitable interest in any assets that are the focus of or affected by the will.

Related documents When to create it
Codicil Your last will needs one or a few small changes.
Self-proving affidavit You want the probate to be easier when it’s necessary.
Living will You want to make sure your end-of-life treatment is carried out according to your wishes.
Living trust You would like to skip probate by having your assets in a trust.
Published: Sep 16, 2020
Mara Erlach
Mara Erlach
Writer & Attorney
Mara has been practicing estate planning and trust law in California since 2003, taking pride in helping clients of all backgrounds and asset profiles form a complete and customized estate plan. Her specialties are: estate planning, wills and trusts, trust and probate administration.