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According to Wikipedia, a codicil is as follows:

In the United States, a codicil is a document that changes an existing will. Amendments made by a codicil may alter, explain, add to, subtract from, or confirm – and otherwise amend a will in any other way, minor or major, short of complete revocation. It is subject to the same formal requirements as a will.

I would think that it would be just as easy to print off a new copy of the will with the necessary amendments, so time saving wouldn't be a reason to create a codicil. If it has the same formal requirements as a will (which I take to mean it needs to be signed by witnesses and such), then why would a person create a codicil?

  • " Wouldn't it be just as easy to print off a new copy " is an opinion, and the question seems like it can only be answered with counter opinions on this point. – user662852 Sep 7 '16 at 3:19
  • @user662852 Rephrased it to not be the focus of the question. – Thunderforge Sep 7 '16 at 16:00
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In modern usage, it is far better to replace a will then to create a codicil primarily because there is only one document to verify the veracity of. As you say, it would be just as easy to print off a new will.

However, the ease of printing off a new one is a relatively recent technological development. When wills were typed on a typewriter or, in even earlier times, handwritten, the advantages of a codicil are much more apparent; particularly when you pay your lawyer by the hour.

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