Howdy! I'm Dan Smith and I live with my wonderful family in Perth. This is my legal blog which aims to look at every part of the legal system. I should point out that i'm not a lawyer myself. However, my good friend Stan has been representing people in court for many years. I find Stan's work fascinating and I love asking him questions. I have even done a bit of my own research into the legal system. I decided to pull everything together here so I could organise my thoughts while also providing useful info for others. Thanks for checking out my blog!
Everyone should think about creating their last will and testament and work out how to settle their estate following their death. After all, it makes everything a lot easier and the details can be cleared up quite easily by a named executor. While most people understand this and take the time to create these documents, they may nevertheless consider this to be a one-time task. This could be problematic, however, and if it's been some time since you created that will, why do need to revisit the document now?
Time Marches On
As time certainly does not stand still, so circumstances can also change. As such, the initial will may have been based on your situation as of that date and would have reflected your life, your dependents and the nature of your estate. However, all of these situations may have changed, and in certain circumstances, your will may no longer be valid.
For example, if you were unlucky to go through a divorce, then this may well cancel any clause within your will that bequeathed money to your former spouse. While you may have taken care of his or her future needs during the divorce settlement phase, you might have to modify your will if you want this person to get any further benefit. Be careful if you are not divorced but simply separated, as this person may still have a legal claim against your estate. You should take legal advice here to see how this could affect your will following your death.
If you've left any kind of legacy to a younger member of the family, it's worth revisiting this in the light of the current-day economy. You may find that the initial gift is now worth much less than it was then due to lower interest rates or the cost of living. In this case, it might be better for you to revisit the will and convert the legacy so that it is index-linked or takes into account volatile economic times ahead.
You may also need to rename some of the key individuals if they are no longer around or cannot perform their duties. In particular, update the details of your executor if they have predeceased you or may no longer be willing or able to execute your estate.
Ask a Lawyer
Get in touch with a wills and estates lawyer and ask them to dust off your will. Have a look at it with a fresh pair of eyes and make any adjustments necessary.Share
26 December 2019