When Should Your Will Be Updated?

Having a will is so important, as it sets out a specific set of wishes, and divides up your property when you are no longer here. However, what some people don’t realise is that there are certain life changes and events that may necessitate you changing your will. If something needs to be changed, it’s important to get professional advice, ensuring that the changes you make are legal, and that the will is valid after the changes. Here are some reasons you might need to change your will.

Marriage or divorce

If you get divorced after writing your will, then it’s important to get it updated. A divorce can cause complications if you don’t have an updated will, and if you left everything to your ex-spouse, then it means the gift can go back to the estate, so would be divided as if you’d passed away without a will. If you still want to leave money or property to your former spouse, it’s possible to state this, but your will needs to be updated.

Those who marry or remarry should also ensure their wills are updated. Many people assume that wills will still be valid, even if they marry later in life, but your marriage can then revoke your will, meaning you need to make a new one.

A new child

Any children or grandchildren born after your will is written will need to be added to your will. They won’t automatically be included, so it’s important that you find a will writing service as soon as possible to get it updated. They can also advise on the use of trusts and other options, so you can ensure your new arrival is taken care of.


Rather than writing a new will, there are some situations where an amendment known as a codicil can be used. Some reasons for this include:

  • Changing your executor or trustee – this can be because the original appointees have died
  • Changing a benefactor
  • Increasing a gift
  • Updating your funeral plans

Codicils can be an easier option for making changes, but again it’s important that they’re carried out by professionals to ensure they are legally binding. They’re usually only used for small changes, and will need to be kept with the original will to ensure your new wishes are carried out. So, if there’s more than one change to make, then it’s sometimes worth having a new will written to avoid confusion.

Removing benefactors

Some people want to change their will to remove benefactors, as they’ve fallen out, or circumstances have changed. In these cases, it’s important to get legal advice, as there have been recent cases where relatives have been cut out of wills, then managed to claim their inheritance through the court anyway. That’s why using a professional will writing service is so important, as it ensures things are clearly laid out.

If you are considering having your will updated, get in touch with Heritage Wills today on 01603 894500 for a friendly, professional service.

Avoid These Four Common Mistakes When Writing Your Will

Did you know that if you fail to create a will before passing away, your assets could be divided amongst your loved ones based on laws created in 1925? Most of us want to decide what happens to our wealth, possessions and estate when we’re no longer here, and the best way to make sure that your wishes are honoured is to create a will.

Surprisingly, according to the Law Society, more than half of UK citizens don’t currently have wills. Without a will or probate, you can’t guarantee that the people you wish to inherit your wealth will receive a penny. For example, if you never married a partner you’ve lived with for years, they may not get any of your wealth when you pass away unless you create a will.

At Heritage Will Writers, our trained and experienced powers of attorney and will writers can help you create a legally binding will so that your money goes exactly where you want it to when you die. We can ensure that your will stands up in a court of law should anybody dispute your wishes, and we can also help minimise the inheritance tax on what you leave behind.

Below, we’ve detailed four common mistakes people make when writing wills so that you can avoid doing the same. Remember, if you want to get your will right the first time and secure peace of mind, we’re only a phone call away.

Ignoring the Rules

Technically, any scrap of paper can be used to create a legally binding document, but you need to follow the rules surrounding the creation of wills to ensure yours is honoured after you pass away. Don’t simply type a few notes into your computer expecting them to be the final say on your wishes, and consider whether professional assistance could be a worthwhile investment, especially if you’re leaving behind a large estate.

Choosing the Wrong Executor

The executor is responsible for settling your estate, sharing your assets among beneficiaries and paying any of your remaining debts, so it’s crucial to pick a person you can trust. You don’t necessarily need to hire a legal professional to execute your will, but avoid making the mistake of choosing someone who may make a huge mess or attempt to misappropriate some of your assets for their financial gain.

Forgetting to Name a Guardian

If you’re responsible for children under 18 years old, you need to remember to name a legal guardian on your will. This ensures somebody you trust becomes legally and financially responsible for your kids should something happen to you before they reach adulthood.

Forgetting to Update Your Will

You’ll probably need to make changes to your will as time progresses and your situation changes, such as if you get married, divorced or have children. While it’s wise to draft your first will before reaching old age, it’s important to make sure it remains up to date.

Let Heritage Will Writers Help You

We understand that nobody wants to pay too much thought to passing away, but it’s essential to have your affairs in order so that you know exactly what happens to your assets when the day finally comes. We’re one of the most trusted will writing and probate companies in East Anglia and the South East, so contact us today on 01603 894500 to find out how we can help you.