Real Time Web Analytics


Monday, March 29, 2010

Can a blind person sign a Will?

A Will has to be a written document, and a legally blind person would likely have difficulty reading it. This gives rise to the question of whether a blind person could legally make a Will. The answer is a resounding yes!

For the sake of restricting this discussion to the topic of making a Will despite blindness, I'm going to assume that we are talking about a person who is of legal age to make a Will and who has the required mental capacity to make a Will.

The key to making a Will for a blind person legal lies in the Affidavit of Witness to Will which is attached to the Will. Every Will needs one of these Affidavits, even when there are no unusual circumstances to consider. The Affidavit contains the evidence that all the formalities of witnessing and signing a Will were properly followed, and is sworn by one of the two witnesses who saw the Will being signed.

When there is an unusual situation, such as the Will being signed by someone who is blind and cannot read the document he or she is signing, the Affidavit will describe the unusual circumstances, and will also describe what was done to address those circumstances. In the case of a blind person, the Affidavit would have to say that the Will was read in full to the blind person, and that it was explained to him or her. It would also have to say that the blind person appeared to fully understand the Will.

This really isn't very different from the Affidavit that would form part of the Will of a sighted person, except that the Will has to be read to the blind person. Every Will, whether the testator is sighted or blind, has to be fully understood by the person who is signing it.

Obviously a blind person will want to work with a lawyer he or she trusts. A lawyer who is well-experienced in Wills and Estates law will ensure that the Will is properly drawn up, and that the Affidavit of Witness to Will is properly in place to support the Will.


  1. We should change laws so legally blind people have better protection than "find a person you trust" because when it comes to wills/trusts money can be an overwhelming factor to change human behavior. I think the law needs to go a step further and in cases of legally blind people, they have a video tape of the reading of the will before a signature is made. My friend just passed away and the man she "trusted" didn't do her wishes and had a "revised" will drawn up when she was 95/legally blind and took advantage of the situation.

  2. Thanks for posting these comments. I like the idea of videotaping the reading of a Will and the subsequent signing of it. Unfortunately, it isn't just blind people who are vulnerable. Older people who are losing mental capacity are also very much at risk. I wish there was something better than "someone you trust" because a heck of a lot of financial abuse is done by someone the person trusted.


You might also like

Related Posts with Thumbnails