Who should make a Will?

  • Anyone who is over the age of 18 and is of a sound mind can make a valid Will and should do so.
  • Anyone who made a Will a long time ago should consider making a new Will.
  • Anyone whose circumstances have changed – perhaps through marriage, the birth of children, divorce, remarriage, or the death of a close relative, for example – should make a new Will.
  • Anyone who is living in a de facto relationship of any kind, especially if some common assets are held in the other partner’s name, should make sure that both partners make a Will.
  • If you get married, any Will you made when single/divorced is revoked (cancelled). There are some exceptions to this, but it is always advisable to make a new Will after marriage.
  • If you get divorced, any Will you made while married may be affected (this depends on the law of the different Australian States and Territories). In Victoria, for example, your divorce will revoke any gift in your Will to your former spouse, and any appointment of that spouse as Executor or Guardian. In other States, the effect of divorce is different. The safest thing to do is to make a new Will when you get divorced, and make another one if you remarry.
  • If you deliberately destroy your Will, it will be revoked.
  • Previous Wills and testamentary dispositions may be revoked by your new Will.