2023 could be the year of change for you, whether it be a new home, new job, marriage, divorce, or a new member of the family. Whatever it might be, you need to be aware of the different ways in which your Will could be affected.
If you have bought a new home, this will affect your will, if your previous house address is included. If this is the case, you will need to contact your will writer to get this amended.
If you have written into your will that you would like your property to be gifted to a beneficiary, and you haven’t updated the address of the new property, then the gift will not be able to be given to the chosen person.
If you have a will made, then at a later date get married, this voids your will. If you wish for all of your assets to go to your new spouse, then this isn’t a problem. However, if you have children from a previous marriage that are included in the will, they will no longer be beneficiaries.
Your children have the right to challenge your will, if they deem this as the right thing to do. However, this is costly and time-consuming.
To avoid any mishaps, it is best to review your existing will before you get married. You can either re-write it, or include a contemplation of marriage clause in it. This is where you express a contrary intention to the ‘automatic revocation’ of your will upon getting married. Specifically, this clause is a declaration within your will that you intended marriage to your future spouse shall not have the effect of revoking your will.
Getting a divorce does not automatically revoke your will, this is why it is important to review your will after you get divorced. Chances are you do not want your ex-spouse to be e beneficiary of your will.
If you do not review your will an ex-spouse can challenge your will upon your death. So the solution to this is to exclude them from the will completely.
There are two ways to include your children in your will. You can include them collectively, or as individual children depending on how you would like gifts to be distributed.
If your will states your children as a collective, this provides for any children living at the time of your death. However, if you list your children individually, and you have had more since your will was written, you will need to update it to include them.
With marriage could come step-children, these are not automatically included in your will, even if you have stated that your estate will go to your ‘children’. You will have to specifically name them or have ‘children and step-children’ written into your will.
If you happen to own property abroad, we advise you to have a will written in the country where the property is. It is important to ensure the will is restricted to the assets only in that country.
The reason for this is it will automatically revoke your existing will in the UK.
If you wish to make amendments to your will or have a new will written, simply contact us. We will be able to assist you with putting the changes you want into place, or draft any new documentation for you. Remember, if you have a new will written, it will revoke any previous wills.