Writing a will is essential for peace of mind but what happens if a few years down the line you need to make some pretty major changes to your will? Well, depending on the company, you have to start from scratch. However, at Bequest, you can make some minor changes to your will without having to completely redo it. 🙌
Some simple reasons to update your will include having a or perhaps your financial situation has changed and you want to increase your cover amount. But if you got divorced and remarried and want to update your executor and beneficiaries, it’s much easier just to go back to the drawing board and start again.
When you create a new will, you MUST destroy and discard the old one. 🔨
There are a few things to bear in mind in order to ensure that your new will is completely valid.
- Firstly, you should destroy your previous will. In legal terms, this is known as revoking your old will. It should be destroyed by you, or in your presence, and if there is a chance that a copy of your previous might resurface at some point down the line, then it could be argued that the destruction was accidental. It’s important to let your executors know about the destruction because if they think that the destruction could have been accidental, there may be certain circumstances where the destroyed will could still stand.
- Your new will must state that it revokes all old wills, otherwise it won’t be considered valid. It’s a good idea to let your executors know about the new will, so that they don’t go looking for an old will which could complicate things.
- If you edit your new will in any way, it could invalidate it in the eyes of the law. This includes crossing anything out or stapling on new pages. If you need to make any changes, make sure you do them with some help, or online with us so you know it’s looked over and done correctly. Currently, if you have a will with us already, you can make changes by reaching out to us and our partners at James Pearson Estate Planning (JPEP) ((https://bequest.com/articles/wills/partner-jpep/) will help make the changes directly for you. A new will will then be drawn up and sent out.
It's fairly unusual to have more than one will, but there are a few exceptional circumstances where an individual might have two wills. If you have property in two locations, you may consider it necessary to have a will in each of the locations. JPEP are always willing to help answer any questions, as it’s important that the wills don’t cancel each other out or lead to confusion if your loved ones were to read them both and find contradictions. Something to consider for those of you who have lived in multiple locations or are lucky enough to have a villa in Spain! 🏠
It’s important to consider reviewing your will regularly, and to keep it up to date with all the major changes in your life. You may want to read our frequently asked questions to learn more. 🤔
At Bequest, we offer free print-at-home wills for you to sign and keep yourself. As well as professionally printed, bound and delivered wills for you to keep safe yourself for £39, and for just an extra £10 you can return it to us for safe storage with our partners at JPEP. For a £9 annual subscription fee you can make up to 3 changes per year or make a one-off change for £60.
The key thing to remember when it comes to making a new will is to destroy the old one. And communicate. Basically, wills are all about communication and if you don’t communicate your wishes clearly, then you may end up leaving your loved ones in doubt over what they should do once you’re no longer around. Any questions, ask us!