When should I update my will?
A Will is a life-long document that should be updated in accordance with any important changes in your life. It is a good idea to check your Will with a solicitor regularly to ensure it still reflects your wishes, and to review any changes to the law that might impact your Will.
Abroad or can’t access a solicitor’s office? Here’s how to make a Will, and ensure your wishes are protected.
When Should I Change A Will?
It’s a good idea to review your Will after life-changing events such as:
Your Will must be updated every time you have a child, in order that they receive what you choose to leave them. You can also name a legal guardian in your Will to protect your children if something happens to you.
Any Wills made before your wedding will be rendered invalid upon marriage, so you must renew your Will soon after to avoid dying intestate. It’s also important to change a Will upon divorce, as divorce does not make an existing Will invalid, but it does prevent your former spouse from receiving anything.
Your Will should be reviewed if you move home to ensure it takes account of the new property and to check that it is not affected by the disposal of the old property.
You may have up to four executors in your Will. If you wish to change executor, or if an executor dies, this must be reflected in your Will.
If someone you’d named as a beneficiary (a person who will inherit from you) has died, you should review to will as it may need to be changed to remove their name and state who will now receive the inheritance.
If you receive a large amount of money, you must state to whom you will leave it in the Will. Similarly, if you lose money, you should review your Will and ensure you’re leaving only what’s available.
Failure to keep your Will current may mean you have an invalid Will or you run the risk of dying without your last wishes accurately reflected.
It’s easy to review your Will regularly – you don’t have to write a new Will every time you need to change it. A codicil (additional note) is often all that’s needed but that has to be done in the right way to be valid.
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