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SEC. 10. Every illegitimate child shall be considered as an heir of its mother, and shall inherit and transmit her estate, in whole or in part, as the case may be, in like manner as if he had been born in lawful wedlock.
SEC. 11. If any illegitimate child shall die intestate, without issue entitled thereto, his real estate shall descend to his mother and her heirs.
SEC. 12. The provisions of this chapter shall in nowise affect the estate of a widow as tenant in dower, or of a husband as tenant by the curtesy, nor shall the same affect any limitation of an estate by deed or will, except the limitation of an estate in fee-tail general.
Title by devise and bequest.
OF WILLS OF REAL AND PERSONAL ESTATE.
1. Who may make a will of real estate. 2. What may be devised.
3. When real estate subsequently acquired may pass by will.
4. What personal estate may be bequeathed.
5. Wills of real estate; how executed. 6. Appointments by will; how to be executed.
7. Who may make a will of personal
8. When wills may be made by married
9. Wills of personal estate; how made. 10. Nuncupative wills; when allowed. 11. Donatio mortis causa; when good.
12. 13. S
Wills; how revoked-by cancelling,
16. Wills; how affected by subsequent conveyance, &c.
17. Wills, once revoked, how revived. 18. Devises, &c.; when not to lapse by
death of devisee in lifetime of testator. 19. Devises, &c., that lapse, &c., to pass under residuary clause in the will.
20. When property as to which the testator has a power of appointment shall pass by will.
Legatees and devisees to contribute ratably to payment of debts.
23. Witness becoming incompetent, will to be proved, &c., as if he were dead.
24. When and how a devisee, &c., a competent witness.
25. A creditor a competent witness, though
debt be charged on the estate. 26. An executor a competent witness.
27. Penalty for not delivering will to the
28. Will; how opened and read.
29. Will relative to real or personal estate may be proved in the orphans' court.
30. Authenticated copies of wills proved out
32. Parties interested may be summoned or
34. Court may then proceed to hear appli-
35. Motion for probate may be made ex parte. 36. Saving in favor of certain parties.
37. Record of what is proved at time of probate; how used.
38. Executor, or party offering will; how examined.
39. Will to be recorded and preserved in the register's office.
40. Purchasers from heirs not affected by will, unless it is recorded, &c.
41. Term will, in this chapter, to include codicil.
42. How far this chapter operates on wills now made, and hereafter to be made.
SECTION 1. Every person, except a married woman, may make a will devising real estate who, at the time of executing and acknowledging the same as hereinafter provided, is of the full age of twentyone years, of sound mind, and capable of making a valid deed or contract.
SEC. 2. All real estate, except estates tail, which might pass by deed, or which would, in the event of the proprietor dying intestate, descend to his heirs or devolve on his other representatives, may be disposed of by will.
SEC. 3. Any right or interest acquired in real estate by a testator after the making of his will, shall pass thereby in like manner as if possessed at the time of making the will, if such shall appear by the will to have been the intention of the testator.
SEC. 4. All the personal estate of a testator remaining at his decease, and all his right thereto and interest therein, may be bequeathed and disposed of by him in his last will and testament, subject to his wife's distributive share at common law; and all such estate not disposed of by will shall be administered as an intestate's estate.
SEC. 5. No will shall be effectual to pass or in any way affect an interest in real estate, unless it be in writing, subscribed by the testator, or some other person in his presence and by his express direction; and, moreover, unless it be wholly written by the testator, the signature shall be inade, or the will acknowledged by him, in the presence of two or more competent witnesses; and such witnesses shall subscribe the will in the presence of the testator and of each other, but no form of attestation shall be necessary.
SEC. 6. No appointments made by will, in the exercise of any
power, shall be valid, unless the same be so executed that it would be valid for the disposition of the property to which the power applies if it belonged to the testator; and every will so executed, except the will of a married woman, shall be a valid execution of a power of appointment by will, notwithstanding the instrument creating the power expressly require that a will made in execution of such power shall be executed with some additional or other form of execution or solemnity.
SEC. 7. Only such persons as have herein before been authorized to make a devise of real estate shall be held competent to execute a bequest of personal estate.
SEC. 8. A married woman shall be competent to make a will disposing only of her separate estate, or in the exercise of a power of appointment.
SEC. 9. No will, except such nuncupative or unwritten will as is hereinafter provided for, shall be effectual to pass, or in any way dispose of, personal estate, unless the same be executed with all the formalities required in section five of this chapter in case of wills devising real estate: provided, however, that the will of any person domiciled out of this District at the time of his death shall be valid as to personal property therein, if it be executed according to the law of the State or country in which he was so domiciled.
SEC. 10. No nuncupative will shall be allowed by law, except those made by a soldier in actual military service, or a mariner at sea, who may make, as heretofore, nuncupative wills, provided he does not dispose therein of personal property exceeding in value the sum of two hundred dollars.
SEC. 11. No donatio mortis causa shall be valid or of any effect when the property delivered exceeds in value the sum of two hundred dollars.
SEC. 12. No will, or any clause therein, shall be revoked, except in the cases hereinafter mentioned, unless by some writing declaring the same, executed as required in the case of a will, or the same with intent to revoke be burnt, cancelled, torn, or obliterated by the testator, or by some person in his presence and by his direction.
SEC. 13. Every will made by a man or woman shall be revoked by his or her subsequent marriage, except a will made in exercise of a power of appointment, when the estate thereby appointed would not,
in default of such appointment, pass to his or her personal representative or next of kin.
SEC. 14. If any person die leaving a child, or his wife enciente of a child which shall be born alive, and leaving a will made when such person had no child living, wherein any child he might have is not provided for or mentioned, such will, except so far as it provides for the payment of the debts of the testator, shall be construed as if the devises and bequests therein had been limited to take effect in the event that the child shall die under the age of twenty-one years, unmarried and without issue.
SEC. 15. If a will be made when a testator has a child living, and a child be born afterwards, such after-born child, or any descendants of his, if not provided for by any settlement, and neither provided for nor expressly excluded by the will, but only pretermitted, shall succeed to such portion of the testator's estate as he would have been entitled to had the testator died intestate, towards raising which portion the devisees and legatees shall, out of what is devised and bequeathed to them, contribute ratably, either in kind or in money, as the circuit court in the particular case, may deem most proper. If, however, any such after-born child die under the age of twentyone years, unmarried and withont issue, his portion of the estate, or so much thereof as may remain unexpended in his support and education, shall revert to the person to whom it was given by the will.
SEC. 16. No conveyance or other act subsequent to the execution of a will shall, unless it be an act by which the will is revoked, as before provided, prevent its operation with respect to such interest in the estate comprised in the will as the testator may have power to dispose of by will at the time of his death.
SEC. 17. No will, or any part thereof, which shall be in any manner revoked, shall be revived otherwise than by the re-execution thereof, or by a codicil, executed in manner herein before required, and then only to the extent to which an intention to revive the same is shown in such will or codicil.
SEC. 18. If a devisee or legatee die before the testator, leaving issue who survive the testator, such issue shall take the estate devised or bequeathed, as the devisee or legatee would have done if he had survived the testator, unless a different disposition be made or required by the will.
SEC. 19. Unless a contrary intention shall appear by the will, such real estate, or interest therein, as shall be comprised in any devise in such will, which shall fail, be void, or otherwise incapable of taking effect, shall be included in the residuary clause, if any, contained in such will.
SEC. 20. A devise or bequest shall extend to any real or personal estate, as the case may be, which the testator has the power to appoint, as he may think proper, and to which it would apply if the estate were his own property, and, unless a contrary intention appear, shall operate as an execution of such power.
SEC. 21. The estate, real and personal, given by will to any legatees or devisees shall be held liable to the payment of debts, in proportion to the value or amount of the several devises or legacies. If there shall be other sufficient estate, specific devises or legacies may be exempted.
SEC. 22. When an estate given by any will has been sold for the payment of debts, all the devisees and legatees shall be liable to contribute, according to their respective interests, to any devisee or legatee from whom the estate devised to him may have been taken for the payment of debts.
SEC. 23. If a witness to a will be competent at the time of attesting the execution of the same, his subsequent incompetency, from whatever cause it may arise, shall not affect the will; but the same may be proved and allowed as if he were dead.
SEC. 24. If a will be attested by a person to whom, or to whose wife or husband, a beneficial interest in any estate is thereby devised or bequeathed, if the will may not otherwise be proved, such person shall be deemed a competent witness; but such devise or bequest shall be void, except that if such witness would be entitled to any share of the estate of the testator in case the will were not established, so much of his share shall be saved to him as shall not exceed the value of what is so devised or bequeathed.
SEC. 25. If a will charging any estate with debts be attested by a creditor, or the wife or husband of a creditor, whose debt is so charged, such creditor shall, notwithstanding, be admitted as a witness for or against the wiil.
SEC. 26. No person shall, on account of his being an executor of a will, be incompetent as a witness for or against the will.