Wills and Divorce

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When married couples separate, they are often preoccupied with the family law side of things, the division of their assets and sorting out the ongoing parenting issues for their children.  Often they forget about estate planning and protecting their future assets.

What if we get a divorce, is my Will still valid?

The Will remains valid, but the terms of your Will that relate to your former spouse will be revoked to the extent of any benefit you have made in your Will to your spouse.

Also, if you have appointed your spouse as the executor of your Will, then that appointment is also revoked when you divorce.  However, if you have appointed your former spouse to hold property on trust for your children, then this appointment may remain valid, notwithstanding that you are divorced at the time of your death.  Talking this over with a good Wills and Estate Lawyer is a good idea, as you may not wish for this to occur once you are divorced.

If you were to pass away before you divorce your spouse, and you have not updated your will after separation, then the terms of your will in favour of your former spouse will stand.

Getting a divorce is not just about sorting out your current assets.  No one likes to think about needing a Will, but it makes good financial sense for you and your loved ones. The best advice is to see your local Rockhampton family law specialist to discuss any changes to your circumstances if you have separated or divorced.

Paula Phelan

Paula is the partner in charge of our family law section. She brings to the section over 14 years experience as a litigation lawyer. She believes that family law isn’t about the fight. It’s about providing you with understanding and support in a difficult time. With careful planning and our early intervention the trauma and stresses (emotional and financial) can be minimised.

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