Changing Your Will
For those of you who made a will before you got married, you may not know that the effect of your marriage invalidated the entire will. Once you get married, the pre-marriage will doesn’t apply and if you had died during your marriage you would then have been treated as intestate.
Conversely, the effect of divorcing your spouse doesn’t have the same effect on a will that you made while you were married. If your ex is named as the executor or trustee of your will, then on the grant of Decree Absolute the law treats your spouse as though they effectively died on that day. If you do not change your will and name a new executor, you risk your estate being dealt with under intestacy rules.
Make it LegalAsk the solicitor who worked on your divorce if they will also be able to change your will for you. It may be cheaper for them to do this for you, or you may be able to negotiate it as part of the cost of your divorce.
When Should I Change My Will?You do not have to wait for your Decree Absolute to come through – you can make your new wishes clear before this.
Do I Need a New Will?You may want to revoke your will entirely and draft a new one. If you do this, try to ensure that you have destroyed all copies of your previous will, including the one in your solicitor’s possession or at the UK Will Register.
Name an ExecutorHave a good idea of who you want your executor to be. An executor can also be a beneficiary. If your children are adults, you may wish to nominate one of them as an executor.
Your AssetsMake a list of all your assets as they currently stand. Although you may feel as though there is little to pass on at the moment, this is likely to change.
If you have heirlooms, or items of sentimental value, that are not valuable but mean a lot to you and your family you should name the intended beneficiary in the event that there is any dispute after your death.