Last Will & Testament
A Last Will & Testament is a legal document that communicates a person’s final wishes, as pertaining to possessions and dependents. A person’s will and testament will outline what to do with possessions, whether they are being left to another person, group or donated to charity, and what will happen to other things for which they are responsible, such as custody of dependents and accounts and interests management. A will is written while a person is alive and carried out once they have passed away. In the will, which must satisfy the formal requirements set forth by Florida law, a still-living person is designated as a personal representative (also known as an executor or ececutrix) and is responsible for administering the estate and is usually supervised by the probate court to ensure that what is specified in the will is carried out.
However, a will does not avoid probate. To the extent a will properly devises probate assets and designates a personal representative, the will controls over the automatic provisions set forth under Florida law. In the absence of a valid will, or if the will fails in either respect, Florida law designates the beneficiaries and designates the way to select the personal representative.