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Holograph wills: how to store and register them to avoid conflicts?

When you decide to write a holographic willit is essential to ensure that this important document will be safely stored. Indeed, if the will were to be lost or damaged, wills of the testator may not not be respected after his death. In this article, we invite you to discover some of tips and best practices how to best preserve your holograph will.

Drawing up and signing a holographic will

Before thinking about the safekeeping of your will, make sure it's in good condition. written and signed. To be valid, a holographic will must meet several conditions :

  • To be fully writes to the hand by the testator (no part may be typed or printed) ;
  • Be dated with precision (day, month and year) ;
  • Be signed by the testator.

We also recommend using black or dark blue ink, and good quality paper to minimize the risk of document deterioration over time.

Keeping a holograph will at home? Is this a good idea?

Once your will has been drawn up and signed, you can choose to keep it at home. If so, here are a few tips to ensure its security:

Choose a safe place

Store your will in a well-sealed binder, envelope or box. Avoid damp places or places exposed to direct sunlight, which could damage the document.

Protect it from fire and flooding

Place your will in a fireproof, water-resistant cabinet, or in an airtight plastic bag and store it in a safe place.

Inform someone you trust

It's important that someone knows where your will is, should the need arise. You can indicate its location to someone close to you, without revealing the contents of the document.

Updates and copies of holograph wills

Don't forget to update regularly your will in the event of a change in your personal or financial situation. To do this, simply draw up a new deed following the same conditions as before, and destroy the old one. (Free example)

It may be useful to make several copies of your will, so that you can keep one in your home and entrust others to people from trust. Be careful, however, not to multiply the number of copies, as this could create problems if the document is updated or contested. 

Keeping a holograph will with a notary 

If you prefer not to keep your will at home, it can be entrusted to a specialist. notary. This solution offers several advantages: 

  • Security Your notary will store your will in optimal conditions, protected from fire, flood and theft. 
  • Privacy only the notary and his staff will have access to the document, which will only be revealed when the estate is opened. 
  • Authenticity In the event of a dispute, a will kept by a notary will generally carry more weight than a document kept by the testator himself. 

To file your holograph will with a notary, simply take the following steps appointment at the notary's office of your choice. The notary will then register the document in his FCDDV (fichier central des dispositions de dernières volontés) and issue you with a receipt attesting to the deposit. 

Download our free template to help you draw up your holograph will!

How much does it cost to withdraw a holographic will from a notary?

The cost of preservation for a holograph will varies according to the fees charged by the notary's office. You should generally expect to pay between 50 and 100 euros for this service, to which are added FCDDV registration fees. 

If you wish to retrieve or change your will kept at a notary's office, all you have to do is take appointment with the study concerned. Don't forget to bring proof of identity and your deposit receipt to prove your identity and your rights to the document. 

Conservation of a holographic will is an important step crucial to guarantee respect for last wishes of the testator. Whether you choose to keep at home or the entrust to a notarymake sure you follow advice and best practices above for ensure safety and authenticity of this document. 

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