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Varying and Revoking your Tasmanian Will

It is important to know in what circumstances your Tasmanian Will is revoked or varied and how you can vary or revoke it should you wish to do so.  

Varying your Will 

Before your Will is signed you can change the wording of it. Any changes by hand need to be signed or initialled near the change by the Willmaker and 2 witnesses. Changes by hand should only be made before your Will has been signed. As most documents are now stored on computers there should be no need for hand amendments as changes can easily be made.

Once signed, your Will cannot be altered and any changes after signing it are of no effect.

A written document called a ‘‘codicil’’ can be added to your Will by a lawyer should you wish to amend your Will after it has been signed. Codicils were popular prior to computers being used by law firms. Accordingly, it is now much easier to make a new Will instead of amending it by making a Codicil.

Revoking your Will

When revoking your Will it is important that your intention to do so is clear. Destroying the Will is one method of making your intention known. Alternatively, a lawyer or someone else in your presence and at your direction can destroy it for you. You may also revoke your Will by writing on it to make it clear that you no longer wish the Will to bremainin force. A Will may also be revoked in writing or by simply making a new Will.

Divorce 

A formal divorce will revoke your Will and act to stop a former spouse from having an interest in your estate or from being able to exercise power to dispose of your estate on your behalf. It is important to note that separating from your spouse will not revoke your Will. Accordingly, it is important to review your Will should you separate from your spouse.

If you fail to review your Will when your circumstances change there is a real risk that your former spouse will receive part or all of your estate should you pass away. 

Below are some examples of life events that can impact your Will:

  • Divorce, separation or the end of a registered de facto relationship
  • Marriage or entering into a de facto relationship
  • If a beneficiary of your Will dies
  • If you sell or obtain property and other assets

After making a Will it is important to review it at regular intervals or if your circumstance change. Court has the power to revoke or enforce a Will in certain circumstances. Court can be costly, time consuming and stressful for families and friends already dealing with the impact of a death. If your Will is up to date it should ensure that your estate is dealt with in accordance with your wishes.

If you would like our assistance in making or changing a Tasmanian Will please contact us on 03 6332 9353.

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