Cutting down on life admin: How a Will in Expectation of Marriage could be the answer

An estimated 64% of weddings were cancelled or postponed last year due to coronavirus. But fortunately, we could see a big increase in weddings taking place this year, after lockdown restrictions are lifted. As you’ll already know, getting married comes with a fair amount of admin.  For example, you might need to apply for a replacement passport and driving licence in your new name (if applicable), arrange to change the account-holder details on household bills, mortgage or credit/debit cards, or even move house. Added to that, did you know that marriage revokes (cancels) your Will, so arranging to make a new one after the wedding is another job to be added to your seemingly never-ending to-do list? So, is there any way you can cut down on the paperwork?

The answer may lie in making a Will in Expectation of Marriage. Making a will in expectation of marriage means a clause is included in your Will specifying that you intend to marry and that your Will is not to be revoked by your marriage.  Properly worded, such a clause means that your marriage won’t invalidate your Will, so you can deal with this well in advance of the wedding and cross it off the “after-wedding” to-do list.  

Are civil partnerships and same-sex marriages included in a Will in Expectation of Marriage? 

Civil partnerships have been included in Section 18 of the Wills Act 1837 since 2005. Same-sex marriages are also included in the legislation since their inception in 2013.  So yes, your civil partnership or same-sex marriage is absolutely eligible for a Will in Expectation of Marriage. 

When is a Will in Expectation of Marriage helpful?

A Will in Expectation of Marriage can be reassuring for people with terminal illnesses, as your wishes will take effect even if the worst should happen very soon after the marriage, before you have been able to make a new Will.  It can be especially useful if you have children from a previous relationship and want to ensure they are provided for – did you know that your children potentially have no rights to your estate once you have remarried, unless you make a new Will after your marriage or a Will in Expectation of Marriage beforehand?  This is because, without a valid Will in place, the intestacy rules apply and these rules rigidly set out who is entitled to your estate.  

It’s all too easy to put off or forget to make a new Will after the excitement of a wedding, but making a Will in Expectation of Marriage is a great way to ensure you already have a valid Will in place beforehand.

Are there any restrictions for a Will in Expectation of Marriage?

There are no restrictions as such when making a Will in Expectation of Marriage. However, there are a couple of things you’ll need to follow: 

  • The person you intend to marry must be named. It’s not possible to make a Will merely referring to potential future spouses.
  • The marriage or civil partnership ceremony must happen within a reasonable time period. 

Planning to get married or form a Civil Partnership this year? Get in touch with us to discuss your Will in Expectation of Marriage:

Talk to our team