Did you know that marrying and divorcing affects your Will?
Not many people are aware of how a marriage or a divorce affects their existing Will. Some people make a Will and put them in the safe or their solicitor’s office and forget about them for years even though life goes on and their circumstances have changed.
You should revise and update your Will every 3 years or when your circumstances change.
Any and all Wills that you have made prior to a marriage is invalid/revoked unless you have made a Will prior to the marriage which expressly states that it was made “in contemplation of marriage”. If you have not done so you should make a new Will.
We recommend that every person makes a new Will as soon as they have separated from their spouse. Divorce does not invalidate the entirety of an existing Will, however, in Victoria, it revokes any gifts to the divorced spouse and any appointment made by the Will-maker of the divorced spouse as an executor, trustee, guardian or advisory trustee other than the appointment of the divorced spouse as a trustee of property left by the Will upon trust for beneficiaries that include the children of the divorced spouse.
You should also make a new Will if you re-partner i.e. enter into a de facto relationship. If you have not done so then your de facto partner would be the most entitled to make a claim against your estate pursuant to Part IV of the Administration and Probate Act 1958 after you pass away.
Along with revising and updating your Will every 3 years it is also important to update your binding nominations for your beneficiaries of your superannuation as they expire every 3 years. If you do not make a nomination in respect of who you want your superannuation to go to after you pass away then the Trustee of your superannuation fund has the discretion as to who it will pay your death benefit.
If it is time to make a new Will please call us at (03) 9555 7233 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to make one.
This article provides information that is general in nature and is not a substitute for legal advice.