When you are excitedly preparing for your wedding, updating your will is often the last thing on your mind. However it is important to understand how putting the ring on the finger will impact your existing will. The key impacts are:
- A Will is normally revoked by you getting married after the will is signed
- There is an exception that if a gift in the Will is in favour of someone who you subsequently marry, then that gift will survive but the rest of the Will is still revoked.
- However your will won’t be revoked if in your will has in it that it was made “in contemplation of the marriage”
- If you are in a domestic relationship (commonly known as a defacto relationship, living together but not married) and there is a chance you will subsequently marry, then you can save the will being revoked upon your marriage by expressly stating in the Will that any subsequent marriage will not revoke the Will
Yes, this is all a bit technical and quite confusing. Best way to avoid this is to make sure you make a new will if you start to live with someone and review your will if you are getting married or have married.
Divorce is different. A divorce does not revoke a Will. However, any gift to a divorced spouse is revoked. The appointment of your spouse as executor is revoked if divorce subsequently occurs unless the provisions in the Will benefit your children.
Don’t wait until you are divorced to think about your Will though. Have a read of this earlier blog I wrote about why you should make a new will when you separate.
Russell Robertson is Bendigo’s only Accredited Wills and Estate Specialist. If you wish to chat about your will or how to make sure you can ensure your funeral arrangements, please phone Russell on 03 5445 1020 or email firstname.lastname@example.org