Each state has its own legal requirements for what makes a Will valid, and among those requirements are rules for how a Will must be signed and witnessed. When you make a Will in Florida, the basic rule is that it has to be signed at the bottom by you, along with two witnesses who also sign the Will in the presence of you and in the presence of each other. There is no legal requirement that a Florida Will be notarized.
However, there’s an affidavit that you can sign along with your Will, called a Self-Proving Affidavit. This is a statement that you and your witnesses sign in front of a notary public, verifying that your Will signing was conducted according to state law. With this affidavit attached, your Will becomes a “Self-Proving Will.”
The benefit of having a Self-Proving Will is that when you pass away, the Self-Proving Affidavit serves in the place of live testimony from your witnesses as to the validity of your Will. So, your Will can be admitted to probate more efficiently, without the need for your Personal Representative to track down the witnesses to your Will and have them testify that it was properly signed.
Your estate planning attorney can help you put an effective Self-Proving Will in place.
He has invested considerable time and energy helping to educate others in estate planning and is widely regarded as a dynamic speaker who can make even the most complex estate planning issues easy to grasp. He provides free monthly seminars to inform the public on the importance of proper estate planning. Over the past fifteen years, thousands of people have come to hear him speak. “Helping people understand their options for estate planning is very important to me,” Robert said. “I like to think that people in our community can look to me for the kind of quality information they need to decide what is best for them and their families.”
His abilities as a listener and communicator are no accident. Robert’s undergraduate degree, which he obtained in 1980 from the University of Miami in Coral Gables, is in English Literature. He received his Juris Doctor degree from the Cumberland School of Law at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama in 1983 and has been in practice ever since. He is a member of the Port St. Lucie Bar Association, the State Bar of Florida, the Martin County Estate Planning Council, the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys.
Robert has been serving the legal needs of Florida residents since 1984. He provides his clients with carefully prepared estate plans that reflect each person’s and family’s unique goals and dreams as well as their financial situation. “Everyone has different needs when it comes to passing on their hard-earned wealth to their loved ones,” he explained. “That’s why one of the most important traits I bring to my client relationships is my ability to listen. Only by paying close attention to what my clients want and need can I deliver them a plan tailored to fit their lives. In fact 90% of our clients tell us we exceed their expectations.”
The Kulas law firm is also a family business. His wife, Roberta, is one of four legal assistants. His brother, Andrew, an associate attorney in the Vero Beach office, assists clients in the estate planning process. The Kulas’ are the parents of two young boys, Kyle and Alexander, and enjoy traveling, golf, fishing, and family outings.
Latest posts by Robert Kulas (see all)
- Can a Third Party Refuse to Honor a Power of Attorney? - April 25, 2016
- How to Pick an Estate Planning Lawyer: 4 Practical Tips - March 28, 2016
- Elder Law Can Affect Anyone, Not Just the Elderly - March 17, 2016