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An oral' or nuncupative will is a will that has been delivered orally to the witnesses. Usually, wills are in a written form, and according to a proper format. As opposed to this, when the will is oral and not written, it is known as a nuncupative will.
A minority of U.S. states permit nuncupative wills under certain circumstances. Under most statutes, such wills can only be made during a person's "last sickness", must be witnessed by at least three persons, and reduced to writing by the witnesses within a specified amount of time after the testator's death. Some states also place limits on the types and dollar amounts of property which can be bequeathed in this manner. An analogy can be drawn to the concept of last donations, donatio mortis causa established by Roman law and still in effect in England and Wales. A few U.S. states permit nuncupative wills made by military personnel in active service and it is common practice for oral wills to be permitted to such military personnel in Commonwealth countries.