Definition: Last Will and Testament

More commonly referred to as a “will,” a last will and testament is a legal document that allows a person (called a testator) to:

  • designate who will receive certain items of the testator’s property after the testator’s death, and under what conditions;
  • appoint a personal representative to administer the testator’s estate;
  • appoint a guardian to look after the testator’s minor children after the testator’s death;
  • create a custodianship and appoint a custodian to care for property held for the benefit of a minor; and
  • create a trust for any of a variety of purposes, such as placing restrictions on gifts or planning for estate taxes.

A will is a common part of an estate plan.

This website provides free instructions and a model template for Washingtonians to draft a very specific type of will called a simple will.