Will (Vasiyat): Meaning  and its types: Everyone aims at leading a meaningful life and is often concerned to leave something for his/her loved ones after death.

When the question comes regarding the property, there are two possibilities, the person may die either by making a will before his/her death or without making a Will Vasiyat Meaning.

When a person dies without making a will, his property is devolved by the intestate succession according to the personal law applicable. But if he dies after making a will, the devolution of his property is as per his will.

Hence, people prefer to make a will before their death to avoid conflict in the family on the succession of his property.

Origin and Growth of Will:

The origin and growth of the concept of Will is unknown in Hindu religion. However, Wills were well known amongst Muslims, and they practiced informal written or oral wills.

But it’s been said that due to the influence of European countries the formal testamentary instruments substituted the informal testamentary instruments.

In India, we have the Indian Succession Act, 1925 which deals with the law applicable to the Wills and Codicils made by the people belonging to Hindu religion. But it does not apply to Muslims as they are governed by their personal law in disposing of their property.

Will Vasiyat Meaning

The term ‘Will’ is derived from the Latin word, “Voluntas”, which was a term used in the Roman law to express the intention of a testator. Thus, Will means the document depicting the intention of a person. The word ‘testament’ is derived from “Testatio Menties” which means the determination of the mind.

Will is a legal declaration made by a person showing his intention with respect to the distribution and management his property after his death. In spite of being a legal document, there is no prescribed format for a Will.

A person can alter or revoke or cancel his will at any time during his/her lifetime and it includes codicils and every writing made voluntarily for the posthumous disposition of property.

Definition of Will:

Ulpain, a Roman Jurist defined a Will as “the legal declaration of a man’s intentions, which he wills to be performed after his death.”

Corpus Juris Secundum, an encyclopedia at the United States at federal and state level defines a ‘Will’ is the legal declaration of a man’s intention, which he wills to be performed after his death, or an instrument by which a person makes a disposition of his property to take effect after his death.

As defined by Section 2(h) of the Indian Succession Act, 1925 a Will is the legal declaration of the intention of a testator with respect to his property which he desires to be carried into effect after his death.

Will Vasiyat Meaning – Other Terms

Testator: The person who draws up his will is known as the testator (male) or testatrix (female). Every person who is of sound mind and major can make a will for the disposition of his/her property with his/her own free volition.

Executors: Executor is the person or persons named by the testator/testatrix to handle the division or administration of his/her property after death. Section 2(c) of the Indian Succession Act, 1925 defines executor as a person to whom the last will of the deceased person is confided by testator for the execution of such last will.

An executor can also be a beneficiary in the same will. Example: Husband and wife. A person who is of sound mind and major can be chosen as an executor. There can be a maximum of four executors. It is advisable to choose at least two executors, so that in case of death of one of them, the other is available.


Beneficiary is the person or persons (whether real or artificial) named by the testator/testatrix on whom his/her property shall devolve after his/her death. Any person, family member, friend, organization, or institution can be made a beneficiary in a will. It is only the person who is himself a witness to a will cannot be made a beneficiary in that will.


Witnesses in case of a Will are the persons whose signatures imply the proof of its execution. Their presence ensures the sound mental health and capacity if the testator wo amle a Will. There is no maximum limit on the number of witnesses, but a minimum of two witnesses must be there.


The proving of the genuineness of the will is known as probate. It is basically a legal document obtained by the executors after the death of testator/testatrix giving them the authority to administer his/her assets.


Codicil is a written legal document executed as an amendment or addition to the original will, without the requirement of rewriting the entire document again.

Will Vasiyat Meaning – Types of Will:

1.) Privileged Will:

Privileged Will is also known as a special Will. It is made in extraordinary circumstances like war or dangerous expedition by the in service soldiers, air force personnel or navy personal. It need not be attested by the witnesses.

Can be made in writing or orally. If written by the testator/testatrix himself or herself, it need not be signed, then it should be in the own handwriting of the signatures of the testator/testatrix are required if the Will is written wholly or partially by another person.

2.) Unprivileged Will:

Any person who is of sound mind and major can make an unprivileged will. When the testator/testatrix makes such will in his/her own handwriting it is known as Hologram will. It must be in writing, signed by the testator/testatrix and by at least two witnesses.

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3.) Joint Will:

A joint will is a will made by two or more persons jointly. Such type of will is generally made by a married couple. Joint will determine the fate of the property of the will on the death of one spouse and also determines as to what will happen to the property after death of the second spouse.

Joint Will – Wikipedia

4.) Mutual Will (Will Vasiyat Meaning)

Also known as reciprocal or mirror will. In mutual wills there are two separate wills made by a couple and these are close mirrors of each other. Under this type of will a couple is allowed to leave entire property to each other. Either spouse if free to change his/her will after the death of the spouse.

Will – Wikipedia

5.) Conditional and Contingent Will:

It is such a will under which property is devolved on the fulfillment of certain condition stipulated in the will or on the happening or not happening of certain event.

Article Credit Goes to:

Ms. Supreet Kaur (Research Scholar, GNDU, Amritsar)