Mutual Will

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Mutual Will

A will executed by a married or partnered couple. Under a mutual will, the surviving spouse is bound by the will's terms after the first spouse dies. In general, mutual wills exist to ensure that property is passed to children of the couple after both spouses die; for that reason, they are most useful if the surviving spouse remarries.
References in periodicals archive ?
The court of first instance decided the allegations of the heirs named in the mutual will were unfounded since it was revoked according to the provisions of the law, which is the only way a will can be revoked.
Witnesses said that the sisters talked about their wills as if it was one will and had said when they died they wanted their estates split fairly and the High Court decided that the 1991 wills were Mutual Wills; Ethel's estate was distributed as if the 2003 will had not been made.
These cases show it is important to understand the difference between Mirror Wills (which can be changed) and Mutual Wills (which cannot).
The court reasoned that the existence of mutual wills gives rise to a presumption of a contract.
The mutual wills unambiguously divided any remaining estate among the four children after both Robert and Dorothy's death, and it was specifically irrevocable.
On August 10, 2010, the Appellate Court of Illinois, Fourth District, determined that a third-party beneficiary is entitled to enforce a contract embedded in a mutual will before the death of the surviving spouse.
CONTENTS I The Context for Reflection II The Doctrine of Mutual Wills A Definitions and Differences B Elements of the Doctrine C Why Make Mutual Wills?
The doctrine of 'mutual wills' dates back to the late 18th century, when it was established in Dufour v Pereira.
This article returns to Dufour to consider how mutual wills found their way into English law and how this affected the development of the doctrine to the present day.
The Court of Appeal dismissed the appellant's appeal against the first instance decision of Harper J in the Supreme Court of Victoria that the wills executed by his parents were not mutual wills. (6) This case note concludes that the primary judgment of Winneke P is very ambiguous.
While the grounds of appeal raised many key issues pertaining to mutual wills, the Court of Appeal failed to take the opportunity to articulate clearly its views of the relevant law.
In an earlier case, the North Carolina Supreme Court recognized the general principle that a mutual will may be revoked, unless made in pursuance of a contract.