National Will Register SARWT

South African

Registry of Wills and Testaments

Frequently Asked Questions


Are there any fees payable to register, or search for a Will?

There is no charge to register or to search for a Will on this site, courtesy of our advertisers and sponsors. We shall endeavour to retain this as a free service subject to sustainability.  backtotop ii


Why register a Will?

By registering you will ensure that your Last Will and Testament are discovered at the time of your passing as the existence and location details of your Will are recorded in a central database affording your loved ones and those tasked with administering your estate easy access to vital information concerning your Will.    

Registration will safeguard your wishes as expressed in your Will, directing distribution of your assets and will necessitate exclusion of the provisions of the Intestate Succession Act.    

By registering you will create certainty concerning your Last Will, preventing potential family disputes giving you and your loved ones peace of mind.  backtotop ii


What are the potential consequences if I omit to register my Will?

The existence of your Will may be overlooked at the time of your passing and your intended heirs will not receive the inheritance you intended for them.

A preceding and outdated Will may be discovered and regarded as your Last Will and Testament not making provision for subsequent life events such as the birth of further children and/or grandchildren, divorce of acquisition of a business.

In the event that your Will is not located at the time of your passing, It may be assumed that you never made a Will.  This will result in your estate being administered in accordance with the rules of intestate succession to the potential detriment of your loved ones. For more information regarding intestate succession please refer to our useful information section.

Your loved ones could not be taken care of in the manner you intended and family disputes may arise.

Your Will may only be located after your estate has been wound-up resulting in potential financial loss, delays and hardship for your loved ones.  backtotop ii


Do I need to send a copy of my Will to SARWT? 

No, SARWT does not retain a copy of your Will. We only allow for the administrative details of a Will to be recorded. The contents of your Will remain private.  backtotop ii


What information will be made available using our search function? 

As Testator/Testatrix, your surname and initials together with the date and location of your Will as well as the contact details of your Executor will be made available but only when your surname and matching identity number are entered in the search function on the SARWT website. We do require your email address as Testator/Testatrix for registration purposes but that is never disclosed.

Please note that we have expanded our Will Register to incorporate the existence, contact and location details of a person's "Living Will" in the case of a medical emergency. 

Our register also provides for the Testator's/Testatrix's Organ Donor Status.

Please refer to our terms of use and privacy policy.  backtotop ii


Will SARWT treat my information as private? 

SARWT as registry keeper will not distribute or make available any of your personal information retained on our database safe for the search function on the SARWT website as described above. Please refer to our privacy policy.  backtotop ii


What information do I need to register my Will? 

In order to "Register a Will" on the SARWT website, we require the following administrative details:

•    Full Names, Surname, Identity Number, Date of Birth and Email Address.
•    Please note no other personal information is required.
•    The email address provided in never made available.
•    The email address is utilised to send a generic email confirming registration on the SARWT site.

•    First Executor, Name, Contact Number and Email Address.
•    Is a Second Executor appointed? (if yes, same details as above).

Original Will
•    Original Will Dated, Kept at, Contact Person, Contact Number and Email Address.

Living Will
•    Does a Living Will exist?
•    If Yes, Date of Living Will, Kept at, Contact Person, Relationship, Contact Numbers and Email Address.
•    Second Contact? (If yes, same details as above, preferably of someone not living with you).

Organ Donor Status
•    Organ Donor: Yes or No or N/A (not unavailable at time of registration).

Registrant Details
•    Are you as Testator/Testatrix registering your Will?
•    If No, Details of Registrant, Name, Organisation, Contact Number, Email Address and Reference Number.  backtotop ii


Who can register a Will? 

You or a third party acting on your behalf may register your Will. The registration form does allow for "Registrant Details" in the case of registration by a third party.

Kindly ensure that your Accountant/Attorney/Broker/Financial Institution register your Will, it is in your best interest!  backtotop ii


My loved ones know where my Will is stored; do I still need to register my Will? 

Registration is free!

There is no prejudice in registering your Will.

Registration will ensure that your Will does not go undiscovered and will promote legal certainty providing you and your loved ones with peace of mind.

Consider the following: “My mom never would have….. there has to be a another last Will and Testament!”. By registering you will create certainty, preventing potential family disputes concerning your last wishes, confirming that the Will in question is in fact your last Will and Testament.

Life is unpredictable with change being the only constant! What if you make a new Will or amend the existing one, appoint another executor or move your Will to another location for safekeeping and omit to inform your loved ones?  backtotop ii


Is it necessary to inform anyone that I registered my Will? 

It is recommended that you inform your loved ones and your executor.  backtotop ii


What information is required to search for the existence and location of a Will? 

All you need is the person’s name, surname and matching identity number. Provided he/she has registered a Will on this site, you will instantly have the date the Will was made, its location and the contact details of the executor nominated in the Will.  backtotop ii


Can anyone verify if I made a Will? 

No, only persons that have your surname and matching identity number will be able to verify the existence and location of your Will via the search function on the SARWT website provided your details have been registered. Please take note that only the administrative details of your Will are recorded, the contents remain private.  backtotop ii


What does it mean if there is no record of a Will in the SARWT database? 

It may indicate that a Will has not been registered in this database or that you did not enter the correct surname and/or matching identity number.

Please note that this does not exclude the possibility that a Will exists. A diligent search will have to be conducted!  backtotop ii


I registered my Will but has since amended and/or made a new Will, the details differ from what are previously registered on the SARWT website, what now?

It is imperative that you register the details of your new and updated Will via the Edit function on the SARWT website! Once your amended details are recorded, a complete registration history will be available in subsequent searches. Remember the onus is on you to provide up to date information.  backtotop ii


I don’t have a Will! 

A Will is a crucial document as it reflects your wishes as to how your assets should be distributed on your passing.  If you do not have a Will, it is strongly recommended that you to rectify the situation without delay by having a Will drafted. Your Auditor, Attorney, Broker or any of the Financial Institutions can assist you in this regard.  backtotop ii


What is a Will? 

Please refer to “Will” in our Useful Info section. backtotop ii


Why extend the Will Register to include organ donor status?

The SARWT Will Register does not serve as a competing database to that of the Organ Donor Foundation. We have included “organ donor status” in our database for the sole purpose of drawing attention to the plight and daily challenges faced by the Organ Donor Foundation. Please click here to access the Organ Donor Foundation’s register.

It is important to note that in the case of a potential organ donation, the Organ Donor Foundation should be contacted.

For more information please visit the Organ Donor Foundation’s website here or view their webpage hosted on the SARWT website here.   backtotop ii