What if I get married after making my will?
If you marry after you have made a will, your marriage cancels your will unless that will was made in “contemplation” of marriage.
If, when you make your will, you are about to get married, you should include a statement that says you wrote your will “in contemplation of marriage” (meaning when planning the marriage). You should name the person you intend to marry in your will. If you then marry that person, your will is not cancelled.
As there are other situations where a will is not cancelled when you get married, if you have married after making your will you should obtain legal advice about whether the will is valid. Alternatively, you could consider making a new will to include your changed personal circumstances.
What if I get divorced after making my will?
In Western Australia, if you were divorced before 9 February 2008, your divorce would not have revoked your will. Therefore, if you have not amended your will since obtaining a divorce, the fact of your divorce will not have revoked the will and it will still be current.
If you were divorced on or after 9 February 2008, the Wills Amendment Act 2007 will apply. This amending Act inserted section 14A into the Wills Act 1970 so that a testator’s will is revoked upon divorce or annulment of marriage unless intention to the contrary appears in the will or is established by other evidence.
For wills created before and not in anticipation of a marriage, as well as a divorce, it’s probably a sensible approach to create a new will in the event of any substantial, personal life changes.
You should also remember that a badly written will can lead to delays, disputes and costly arguments. It is best to use a lawyer to draft your will so that your intentions are clear and expertly drafted.
This is general information only, and does not constitute specific legal advice. If you would like further information in relation to this matter or other legal matters please contact our office at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 1800 609 945.