Who is entitled to inspect a will or to obtain a copy of a will?
Succession Act states:
- A person who has possession or control of a will of a deceased testator must, if asked, do either or both of the following—
- allow an entitled person to inspect the will;
- give an entitled person a certified copy of the will on payment of the person’s reasonable expenses of giving the certified copy.
- If a will of a deceased testator has been lost, stolen or destroyed, a person who has possession or control of a copy of the will must, if asked, do either or both of the following—
- allow an entitled person to inspect the copy;
- give an entitled person a certified copy of the copy on payment of the person’s reasonable expenses of giving the certified copy.
- A person who has possession or control of a will, or a copy of a will, of a deceased person must produce it in court if the court requires it.
What happens when a person dies without a Will?
When a person dies without a will they are said to have died intestate. The Succession Act details how the estate of the deceased is to be distributed if they died intestate.
Who can administer an intestate estate?
An application needs to be made to the court to administer the estate of the deceased. This is most commonly done by a beneficiary of the estate, although a professional can be appointed in lieu of a family member/beneficiary.
How is the estate of a couple dealt with if they die at the same time?
Section 65 of the Succession Act provide the following:
Presumption of survivorship where 2 or more persons have died in circumstances rendering it uncertain which of them survived the other or others, such deaths shall (subject to any order of the court), for all purposes affecting the title to property, be presumed to have occurred in order of seniority, and accordingly the younger shall be deemed to have survived the elder for a period of 1 day.
What effect does the commencement or cessation of a relationship have on your will?
When you marry or commence a civil relationship, unless you can show that your will was made with the marriage or partnership in mind, your will, will be cancelled except where it makes a gift to your spouse or partner and nominates them as any of the following:
- trustee; or
Divorce or ending a civil relationship does not officially cancel your will, but it cancels any provision made in favour of your former spouse (or partner), as well as any appointment of that former spouse (or partner) as an executor, trustee or guardian.
What is the difference between a living will and a will?
The basic difference is that a will is used to dispose of assets after death. A living will can be used to provide health care instructions in advance, such as whether life support is desired.