I made a mirror will with my spouse who has now died. Do I need to do anything?

Mirror wills are a popular choice for most married couples. They are usually almost identical in their drafting, leaving everything to the surviving spouse on the first death and then to children or more distant relatives when the second spouse dies.

In many cases, a Grant of Probate will not be required on the first death, particularly if all significant assets in the estate are held in the joint names of the married couple. This can apply to the home and joint bank accounts. Such assets automatically transfer to the surviving owner on death. In cases such as these, it is only necessary to inform the relevant authorities and financial institutions of the death and they will do the rest. However, it is important to check exactly how the assets are owned and contact a solicitor for advice if there is any doubt.

Valuable assets held in the deceased’s sole name will certainly require a Grant of Probate before they can pass to the surviving spouse.

If you would like to discuss obtaining a Grant of Probate or have questions regarding the ownership of assets or mirror wills, our specialist Wills, Trust and Probate solicitors; Melanie Byrne and Paul Baker can assist you. Contact the team on 0161 615 5554, email info@psg-law.co.uk or visit our Altrincham office.