|Minimum Age to Make a Will||18|
|Written Document Required||Yes|
|Nuncupative Wills (Oral)||No|
|Holographic Wills (Hand-Written, Unwitnessed)||Yes|
|Number of Witnesses Required||2|
|Statutory Form for Self-Proving Affidavit||No|
Who may make
A person of age and sound mind may devise, bequeath and dispose of his estate, real and personal, and of any right or interest which he has in any real or personal estate, by his last will and testament, and the word "person" shall include a married woman.
Deposit of will for safekeeping; delivery; final disposition
a) A testator may deposit a will for safekeeping in the probate court for the district in which the testator resides on the payment of a fee of $2.00 to the court. The register shall give to the testator a certificate of deposit, shall safely keep each will so deposited and shall keep an index of the wills so deposited.
(b) Each will so deposited shall be inclosed in a sealed wrapper having inscribed thereon the name and residence of the testator, the day when and the person by whom it was deposited, and the wrapper may also have indorsed thereon the name of the person to whom the will is to be delivered after the death of the testator. The wrapper shall not be opened until it is delivered to a person entitled to receive it or until otherwise disposed of as hereinafter provided.
(c) During the life of the testator that will shall be delivered only to the testator, or in accordance with the testator's order in writing duly proved by oath of a subscribing witness, but the testator's duly authorized legal guardian may at any time inspect and copy the will in the presence of the judge or register. After the death of the testator it shall be delivered on demand to the person named in the indorsement.
(d) If the will is not called for by the person named in the indorsement, it shall be publicly opened at a time to be appointed by the court as soon as may be after notice of the testator's death. If a petition to open a decedent's estate is filed in a district other than where the will has been kept, the will shall be delivered to the executor therein named or to the person whose name is indorsed on the wrapper or shall be filed in the other court, as the court may order.
(e) Except as provided herein, wills deposited for safekeeping or any index of wills so deposited are not open to public inspection.
Execution of will; requisites
Except such nuncupative wills as are hereinafter mentioned, a will shall not pass any real or personal estate, or charge or affect the same, unless it is in writing and signed by the testator, or by the testator's name written by some other person in the testator's presence and by the testator's express direction, and attested and subscribed by two or more credible witnesses in the presence of the testator and of each other.
A nuncupative will shall not pass personal estate when the estate thereby bequeathed exceeds the value of $200.00, nor shall such will be proved and allowed, unless a memorandum thereof is made in writing by a person present at the time of making such will, within six days from the making of it, nor unless it is presented for probate within six months from the death of the testator.
How made by soldier or sailor; military will
(a) The provisions of this chapter shall not prevent a soldier in actual military service, or a mariner or seaman at sea, from disposing of his or her wages or other personal estate as he or she might otherwise have done.
(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a military will containing a provision stating that the will is prepared pursuant to 10 U.S.C. § 1044d shall be deemed to be legally executed and shall be of the same force and effect as if executed in the mode prescribed by the laws of this state.
Subsequent incompetency of witnesses
If the witnesses attesting the execution of a will are competent at the time of attesting, their becoming subsequently incompetent shall not prevent the probate and allowance of the will.
Devise or legacy to witness
If a person, other than an heir at law, attests the execution of a will whereby he or his wife or her husband is given a beneficial devise, legacy or interest in or affecting real or personal estate, such devise, legacy or interest shall be void so far only as concerns such person or his wife or her husband or one claiming under such person, husband or wife, unless there are three other competent witnesses to such will. Such person so attesting shall be admitted as a witness as if such devise, legacy or interest had not been made or given. A mere charge on the real or personal estate of the testator for the payment of debts shall not prevent his creditors from being competent witnesses to his will.
Wills made out of state
A last will and testament executed without this state in the mode prescribed by the law, either of the place where executed or of the testator's domicile, shall be deemed to be legally executed and shall be of the same force and effect as if executed in the mode prescribed by the laws of this state, provided that such last will and testament is in writing and subscribed by the testator.
[Reference - Vermont Requirements for a Will]