You have the option of registering your New Jersey Last Will and Testament with the Will Register maintained by the secretary of state. The register merely provides a record that you have created a Will and shows information regarding the date it was made and the location of its whereabouts at the time of registration.
The registry does not keep your original Will or a copy. You should always keep your Will in a safe place and let your executor know its location. Registering your Will is optional. The fee for registering a New Jersey Will is $10.00. The following persons are allowed to search the register to see the relevant information about your Will:
- Spouse and children;
- Potential heirs;
- Beneficiaries and fiduciaries under your Will;
- Any other person having a property right in or claim against your estate.
The provision is contained in title 3B of the New Jersey Code: 3B:3-2.1 Creation, maintenance of will registry; fees. 1. a. The Secretary of State shall create and maintain a will registry in which a testator or his attorney may register information regarding the testator’s will. The information contained in such registry shall include the name of the person making the will, the date the will was made, and sufficient identification of the location of the will at the time of registration. The registry shall not contain a copy of the will. b. The fee for registration of a will shall be $10.00, which shall be deposited by the Secretary of State in the General Fund. c. The existence or nonexistence of a registration for a particular will shall not be considered as evidence in any proceeding relating to such will, and the failure to file information about a will in the will registry shall not be a factor in determining the validity of the will. d. The fee for application to the Secretary of State to conduct a search of the registry shall be $10.00, which shall be deposited by the Secretary of State in the General Fund. Only interested persons and their representatives may conduct a search of the registry. As used in this act, “interested persons” means children, spouses, potential heirs, devisees, fiduciaries, creditors, beneficiaries and any others having a property right in or claim against a trust estate or the estate of a decedent which may be affected by the proceeding. e. The Secretary of State shall not be liable for the accuracy of the representation of the person conducting a search of the registry or for the accuracy of the information contained in the registry.