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A testament in Indonesia is the right instrument to reflect your last will about your assets, and other things that you want your successor to do for you. This is a very serious business as you need to make sure the person you trust as your administrator to execute those wishes after you're gone. 

In order to valid legally, you need to make sure your last will is being written in a recognized testament. You should know that according to the Indonesian laws on inheritance, anything you own while you are alive belongs to your heir, as long as you have not made any withstanding legal stipulation. Some terms and conditions are applicable in order to create the last will that works for you, not against you. 

One Testament for One Person

You and your spouse may have the same thing in mind. You love each other, spend your lives together, and think that it's now to pass everything to your loved ones. Both of you are thinking to write a last will to make sure they are getting everything after you passed-away.

It's a good idea! But you've got do it on a separate testament. Just because you're a husband and wife, you can't do it on the same document. You have to do it on a different deed. It's a last will, not a prenup.

Our Civil Code imposed the stipulation in Article 930: "A last will cannot be made by two or more individuals in one deed, whether it is in favor of a third party, mutual or reciprocal arrangement."

Types of Last Will

Your last will can be made by holographic. It means you can write it with your hand. It is a handwritten and testator-signed document. It is recognized in Indonesia, but it must be drawn-up with a deed of safekeeping. As the testator you must sign it at the bottom of your last will. It must also be signed in front of the two witnesses.  

With the deed of safekeeping, such holographic last will have the same validity as a last will made by official deed, without having regard to the noted date on the last will. At all times, you may reclaim your holographic testament. It is then shall be regarded as revocation of your last will.Even though Indonesian laws on inheritance recognized this type of testament, nevertheless, I would suggest you to make time to draw-up a formally-drafted deed.

Your last will can also be made by official deed. It shall be executed in the presence of two witnesses. The deed must be signed by you as the testator, and his/her witnesses. If you're intend to make a private or confidential statement, you are required to put your signature beside each of your stipulations, either written by yourself, or those that were written by somebody else.

Criteria of the Witnesses

In order to write your last will, you need to have two witnesses present. This is mandatory requirement as imposed by all inheritance laws in Indonesia. The primary criteria to serve as witness that they must present at the time that last wills are made, shall be of age, and shall be resident in Indonesia. 

Another criterias for serving as witness that you must meet capacities set-out by the law. No heirs, legatees, nor their blood relatives or relatives by marriage up to and including the fourth degree, nor their children or grandchildren, nor blood relatives in the same degree,  shall be permitted to be witnesses of a last will, made in the form of an official deed.

Last Will During Pandemic

Last will creating during pandemic where all relations have been prohibited due to plagues or other contagious diseases, can make their last will in the present of two witnesses. You as the testator must sign it in front of the witnesses.

In the event the testator or one of the witnesses declares that he is unable to write or has been prevented from signing, then such declaration including the cause of the impediment shall be expressly referred to in the deed. All the circumstances, which have resulted in the last will being made shall be stated in the deed.

The last wills shall be invalid, if the testator dies six months after the circumstances which resulted in the wills being drawn up in such a format no longer exist.  The last will shall be invalid, in the event that the testator dies six months after the date of the deed.

The formalities of the last will must be carefully observed in order to meet the stipulation according to the inheritance law. If you fail to do so, will render them invalid. 

Testamentary Gift

In Indonesia, we recognized this as "Hibah Wasiat." It is a special testament, under which the testator bestows onto one or more persons his properties of a certain kind, for example, all of his properties, movable or immovable, or the usufruct rights over the entire or part of his estate.

Each recipient of the testamentary gift must claim the transfer of the gifted properties against the successor or the testament recipient, who must transfer such properties. All taxes, under whatever name, payable to the state for each gift, is borne by the recipient unless otherwise stated in the testament.

Revocation and Expiration 

A last will cannot, either in its entirety or partly, be revoked in any manner other than by a subsequent last will, in which the testator declares the full or partial revocation of his earlier last will.

The revocation, either express, or implied, in a subsequent last will, shall be fully enforceable, notwithstanding that the subsequent deed is rendered invalid due to the incompetence of the nominated heir or legatee, or by their refusal to accept the inheritance.

Executor and Administrator

A testator, may, by last will, appoint one or more executors of his last will. He may also nominate several individuals, to succeed one another in the event of unavailability. They have very important jobs to make the last will properly implemented. 

The executors of a last will is to seal the inheritance. In the event that the heirs are minors under conservatorship, who, at the death of the testator have not been provided with guardians or conservators, or in the event that such heirs are not represented or are not present in person.

They prepare an estate description of the properties in the inheritance, in the presence of the heirs following the proper summons of those who reside within Indonesia. They ensure that the last will of the deceased shall be implemented. In the event of dispute, they can appear in court to maintain the validity of the last will.

The executors of last wills, including the administrator, may be discharged for the same reasons applicable to discharge of guardians. 

My name is Asep Wijaya. Thank you for visiting my blog and reading my posts!

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Last will in Indonesia is a legal instrument to distribute your assets after you pass-away. This is your preferred way to get the people you care most to inherit your assets notwithstanding any prevailing rules and regulation regarding inheritance in Indonesia. You can distribute any rights and obligations in the field of property law to your next of kin.

There are three (3) different inheritance laws in Indonesia, and you must specify one law in your last will. We have Customary Law, Islamic Law, and Civil Inheritance Law. The three laws are very different to one another. You may opt one law, regardless your religion affiliation, and once you made the choice, you must stick to it and your family members must respect your option. 

As the person who sign a last will, you will be called a Testator. In order to have a valid last will, you need to comply with several terms and conditions. Some of them are simple, some of them are quite tricky. But let's take it one step at a time. Shall we go over the rest of them?

Minimum Age

In order to be eligible to write a last will, you must at least 18 (eighteen) years old, and you're married. This is the legal requirement that you must comply with. There's no exception for this, otherwise your last will is challengable. Inheritance matter is for real.

In accordance with the Article of 897 of Civil Code imposed that minors, who have not reached the full age of eighteen years, are not allowed to make wills. The competence of the Testator shall be judged based on the condition that he was in at the time that the last will was made. At Wijaya & Co., we always pay attention to our clients' case details. Please contact me should you require any further assessment regarding your valid last will in Indonesia. 

The Subject Involved

The people involved in this case are the deceased with assets to distribute. He/she is called the Heiress. The other that involved in this are called the Heir. This is the people that eligible to inherit after meeting the legal requirements. The heir must be born at the time of the inheritance was opened, and he must alive. 

The Capacity to Inherit

You must have legal capacity to inherit from the deceased. A person must meet the following requirements in order to eligible to receive an inheritance:

  1. They must have blood relationship with the deceased. They can be his child, siblings, father or mother;
  2. They must have a marital relationship with the deceased. They can be either a wife or a husband of the deceased.

How Can You Inherit?

There are several ways you can inherit something from the deceased. You can inherit by law by becoming yourself, or by replacing someone's place. As a child of your parents, by law you have all the rights to inherit all your parents' assets. You can also acting as a replacement of your parent to receive inheritance from your grandparent. This replacement capacity may only happen in the event your parent has passed-away. 

You may not be the person related to the deceased via blood nor a marriage. The other way you can inherit is through a last will. The deceased must include you in his last will as one of his next of kin to receive an inheritance from him after he's gone. There are strict terms and conditions that must be met in order to eligible to inherit via this route. The maximum you can inherit under this scheme is 1/3 after deducted with all the liabilities and expenses. 

Executing Your Last Will

Following the death of the testator, the last will shall be submitted to the probate office. Probate is the proceeding of establishing the validity of a last will. In Indonesia, the government office like this called "Balai Harta Peninggalan" (BHP). The last will must be submitted to the probate office within the jurisdiction of the available inheritance is located. This board open the last will and draft minutes of the submission and the opening of the last will, and is include details therein of the condition that it is in. Thereafter be returned to the your legal representation for further execution of the inheritance. 

The Article 955 of Civil Code imposed that upon the death of the testator, legal title to the properties shall devolve upon the beneficiaries named in the last will as well as the individuals to whom the law grants part of the inheritance.

My name is Asep Wijaya. Thank you for reading my posts!

Published in Library

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