Your Will is a dynamic and living document that needs to be reviewed and updated every few years to reflect any major events in your life.
The reality is that when people go through life -changing events the last thing on their mind is updating their Will. This can cause devastating unintended consequences should you pass away without an updated Will.
One of the most common scenarios is when spouses forget to update their Wills after a divorce. People fail to remember that when they get divorced, their ex-spouse is still nominated in their Will.
South African legislation states that when you get divorced, you have 3 months to update your Will. If you do not update your Will and you pass away 3 months after your divorce, the court will assume you meant to keep your ex-spouse as a beneficiary.
This may cause serious problems if you have remarried and have children with your new spouse when you pass away.
If you were to pass awat before the 3 months lapse, the court will consider your ex-spouse as having pre-deceased you (even though they haven’t actually died). He/she will be excluded as a beneficiary of your Will, and therefore not inherit. That portion of the estate could be administered accordinmg to the intestate succession act.
Life is unpredictable. Is your Will up to date?