What is a Mirror Will?

28 December 2016

Explained by Head of Wills, Solicitor James Antoniou

Mirror Wills are commonly used by couples that have very similar wishes about what should be written into their Wills. For example, a couple may want to ensure that when the first person dies, everything they individually own is left to the surviving partner.

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For most people it’s unlikely that, at the time of making their Wills, the couple will know which of them is going to die first. Their Wills therefore need to cover each scenario.

Well-drafted Wills should also include what should happen when the second partner dies and where they would like their estate to go in those circumstances.

A typical example is where a married couple have children together. The couple may want to leave everything they own to each other when the first person dies and then, when the survivor dies in the future, everything is inherited by their children in equal shares.

Because the couple do not know who is going to die first or second, the Wills that the couple put in place are identical insofar as the beneficiaries are the same regardless of which of them dies first or last.

These types of Wills are known as Mirror Wills. The term 'mirror' is used to demonstrate that each Will is a reflection of the other.

Making Mirror Wills together as a couple is cheaper than writing two single Wills containing different beneficiaries, so it’s more cost efficient for couples to make Mirror Wills.

If you would like to know more about Mirror Wills and whether they suit your requirements please contact us for free initial advice and guidance.

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