Sunday, Aug 13, 2023

Legacy tech? Hyderabad-based startup lets you create online wills

In an interview with, Vishal Mehta, Director at Mitt Arv, explains why he created the platform that simplifies listing of a person's assets.

Mitt ArvVishal Mehta (left), who works for Microsoft and is based in Singapore, started Mitt Arv in early 2022 with Ashwin Jain (right) who is co-founder and CTO. (Image credit: Mitt Arv)
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Legacy tech? Hyderabad-based startup lets you create online wills
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“When my batchmate from IIM-Calcutta passed away during the Covid-19 Delta wave, he left behind a two-year-old daughter. At that moment, my son was six months old… I trembled at that time,” Vishal Mehta remembers. “That’s when I created a financial will and bought my assets together… but then I realised that there’s no application or easy way to do this,” Mehta explains the reason why he created Mitt Arv, a platform that simplifies listing of a person’s assets.

Mehta, who works for Microsoft and is based in Singapore, started Mitt Arv in early 2022 with Ashwin Jain who is co-founder and CTO at the Hyderabad-based startup. Mehta is the director of the firm.

Mitt Arv, which means “my legacy” in the Swedish language, draws on personal experiences. “In the process of making the will, I realised that in Singapore, there’s no concept of a nominee. So I actually had to take all the assets which I had in Singapore and moved them to India; it was a hard process from a logistical perspective,” Mehta tells However, Mehta says the biggest challenge for people is not to make the will itself but rather to list down all the assets they own.

“People of my father’s age have passbooks and life insurance certificates, but our generation doesn’t even have them in print form anymore. Instead, everything is in our inbox or digital form. But suddenly if the breadwinner of the house goes away, then things become tough not because they don’t have money but because no one has access to that information in the first place,” Mehta explains the necessity of a platform like Mitt Arv which makes it easy for users to execute succession planning – whether they are monetary, personal, or aimed at leaving a legacy.

The mobile app, which is currently available on Google’s Android platform as a beta version and requires a referral code to access, offers two products in the form of Emotional Will and Asset Vault. Mehta describes “emotional will” as something where users can share messages with their loved ones in either text, audio, or video format. They can choose when it needs to be delivered when they are terminally ill or posthumous.

To get the feature to work, users need to register a trusted contact who will be informed about the status of the individual after the person is no more. The app starts sending notifications if the users don’t log in for 90 days and once no response is received, Mitt Arv reaches out to the trusted contact and asks for the status via email. If the status is received as “deceased”, the emotional will” be released and delivered to the specific recipient which the user had pointed to.

“An emotional will is nothing but your emotional wasiyat; it’s like a will which you create, something which you want to let your friends and family or whoever but that would be delivered posthumously,” he said, adding that the messages will only be delivered after the person dies.

mitt Arv The platform is end-to-end encrypted, claims Mehta. (Image credit: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Express)

Some may say the trusted contact has access to the information stored on the app, and that’s a valid concern. Mehta reminds us of the concept of “assisted living” where we assist our elders who are technically challenged to perform certain transitions. In that case whoever knows the email id of the user (say your father’s email id) will also have access to the information stored on the app. That being said, Mehta and the team are working on an additional locking mechanism that locks the emotional will which will be rolled out in the coming months.

Another aspect of the Mitt Arv platform is the Asset Vault which helps users manage their assets in an organised manner. “The idea is as soon as I get an asset, or as soon as I get a house or a new bank account or a fixed deposit or insurance policy, I will go and add it inside my asset wallet or the app,” he explains.

Right now, what most users choose to do is to store their assets digitally on Google Drive or list down details by making a spreadsheet. “The [Mitt Arv] platform is to organize everything and keep it till it is needed and deliver it to the right person at the right time.”


Mehta says he is working on a feature called “templated will” wherein users can put in all the details of the asset and with a click of a button, a templated will be created which they can register. “The templated will also not be immediately valid, you have to sign, print and download it, and get it registered. So that’s how it becomes legally valid,” he says. “We are not assisting any customers in doing that process but we are helping them reach that process.”

In India, a will refers to a legal document wherein a person declares his intention with respect to the disposal of his property which he desires after his death. “We are not storing wills as such but if you want to store the will, we are giving you a possibility of doing that. So any information on our platform is legally valid, as it is on Google Drive,” clarifies Mehta.

Mitt Arv 66 Mehta is the director at Mitt Arv. He currently works at Microsoft and is based in Singapore. (Image credit: Mitt Arv)

“The most important time when an individual passes away, posthumously, there is no one who’s going to remind the family members that this particular asset exists,” Jain chimes in, adding that with Mitt Arv, after 90 days if even the trusted contact comes back to us and says this person has passed away, we will release all the details stored to the family members,” he explains why their platform is a better solution than Google Drive to store asset details.

Mehta says he and his team worked to design the platform for nearly ten months. “It was fairly difficult because, in the asset world itself, there are many permutations and combinations which you have to take care of otherwise, they can overwrite each other,” he said.

The Mitt Arv is a free platform but Mehta is thinking of adding freemium features and eventually, a set of premium features will also be rolled out. As part of the freemium features, the platform currently allows users to write/record three emotional wills but anything extra will be charged. Similarly, for premium features, Mehta is thinking of adding a feature wherein users can do a differentiated sharing of assets within the family.


Mehta says the platform is scalable and there is money to be made. However, right now, Mehta is sticking to two products – Emotional Will and Asset Vault. In the coming months, the team plans to add more products – one is a Time Capsule where you can record a message and decide when it needs to be delivered. In fact, the feature is inspired by Rani Mukerji’s character in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai where she leaves behind eight letters for her daughter, one for each of her birthdays till she turns 8 years old, so that she could learn about her mother. The plan to introduce a marketplace is also in the pipeline where the idea is to bring claim agents under one roof.

Mitt Arv is a self-funded startup but Mehta does have plans to raise money in the next six to nine months but it all depends upon how the product will be received. “We are aware, this is not going to be something where we launch the app and people start adopting it. It’s a long-term game,” says Mehta.


The platform itself (Mehta says iOS and Web apps are in the works) is targeted at users between 25 and 50 years. Contrary to the belief that the Mitt Arv is aimed at senior citizens and the elderly, Mehta wants young users to use the app for asset listing and bring their parents and family on the platform.

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“We were initially calling our startup a death-tech startup but after we got feedback from friends and family, we decided to change the narrative and call it a legacy tech platform. The thought is that every person has a legacy to create for the family members and we are giving a platform to do just that,” Mehta sums up what Mitt Arv stands for.

First published on: 13-08-2023 at 12:03 IST
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