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Should I wait until I get married to make a Will?

Wedding day of a couple who didn't make a Will before getting married
SUBJECT: Wills
AUTHOR: Graham Southorn

There’s no need to put off making a Will until you get married – indeed it’s far better to do it before the big day.

Some couples might put off making a Will because they think that marriage or civil partnership automatically revokes a Will.

This is true – the law dates all the way back to the Wills Act of 1837 and remains in force today. And since civil partners now have the same legal rights, it applies to them too.

However, it’s perfectly legal to insert a line in your Will that says you intend to marry your partner. There’s even a name for it – a “contemplation of marriage” clause.

With the contemplation of marriage clause inserted, the Will you make before you get married is legally valid afterwards. And again, the same applies to civil partners.

It also makes no difference that your name might change on marriage, although you can change this the next time you make a Will.

Will you really get round to it?

But what’s the hurry? Why can’t the Will wait?

Reason number one is to protect your partner in case the worst happens. That is, someone passes away before the wedding. It’s unlikely but not impossible.

If that happens, the rules of intestacy would apply.

Your children (if you have any) would inherit everything. This would be a particularly difficult situation if they are minors, since they could not inherit until they are 18 years of age.

If you don’t have children, your assets would go to other blood relatives. Your spouse-to-be would get nothing.

The second reason is because you may not get round to it for a while.

If you’re planning a big wedding do, chances are you’ll spend months booking the venue, writing invitations, buying rings, arranging dress fittings and much more.

In the midst of all of this, will you really get round to making a Will?

If you’re honest with yourself, probably not.

So it’s best to make a Will now, while you’re thinking about it. It won’t take long – request a callback and we’ll get it done for you.

For further information, download free factsheets on Wills, Trusts, Inheritance Tax, Lasting Power of Attorney and more.

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The information contained in these articles is for general interest purposes only. We take every precaution to ensure that the information is correct at the time of publishing but errors can occur. Given the changing nature of laws, rules and regulations, there may be omissions or inaccuracies in the information. Bristol Wills & Estate Planning Ltd is not responsible for any errors or omissions or for any results obtained from the use of this information. You should never rely on the information in these articles as a substitute for professional legal advice, whether from Bristol Wills & Estate Planning or any other legal service or professional.

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