Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 64.2. Wills, Trusts, and Fiduciaries
Chapter 4. Wills
12/1/2022

Article 2. Revocation and Effect.

§ 64.2-410. Revocation of wills generally.

A. If a testator with the intent to revoke a will or codicil, or some person at his direction and in his presence, cuts, tears, burns, obliterates, cancels, or destroys a will or codicil, or the signature thereto, or some provision thereof, such will, codicil, or provision thereof is void and of no effect.

B. If a testator executes a will in the manner required by law or other writing in the manner in which a will is required to be executed that expressly revokes a former will, such former will, including any codicil thereto, is void and of no effect.

C. If a testator executes a will or codicil in the manner required by law that (i) expressly revokes a part, but not all, of a former will or codicil or (ii) contains provisions inconsistent with a former will or codicil, such former will or codicil is revoked and superseded to the extent of such express revocation or inconsistency if the later will or codicil is effective upon the death of the testator.

Code 1950, § 64-59; 1968, c. 656, § 64.1-58.1; 1985, c. 431; 2012, c. 614.

§ 64.2-411. Revival of wills after revocation.

Any will or codicil, or any part thereof that has been revoked pursuant to § 64.2-410 shall not be revived unless such will or codicil is reexecuted in the manner required by law. Such revival operates only to the extent that the testator's intent to revive the will or codicil is shown.

Code 1950, § 64-60; 1968, c. 656, § 64.1-60; 1985, c. 431; 2012, c. 614.

§ 64.2-412. Revocation by divorce or annulment; revival upon remarriage; no revocation by other change.

A. For the purposes of this section, the terms "revocable," "settlor," "trust instrument," and "trustee" have the same meanings as provided in § 64.2-701.

B. If, after making a will, the testator is divorced from the bond of matrimony or his marriage is annulled, the divorce or annulment revokes any disposition or appointment of property made by the will to the former spouse. Unless the will expressly provides otherwise, any provision conferring a general or special power of appointment on the former spouse or nominating the former spouse as executor, trustee, conservator, or guardian is also revoked.

C. Property prevented from passing to a former spouse because of revocation pursuant to subsection B shall pass as if the former spouse failed to survive the testator. Provisions of a will conferring a power or office on the former spouse shall be interpreted as if the former spouse failed to survive the testator.

D. Unless the trust instrument expressly provides otherwise, if a settlor creates a revocable trust and if, after such creation:

1. The settlor is divorced from the bond of matrimony or the settlor's marriage is annulled and the trust was revocable immediately before the divorce or annulment, then a provision of such revocable trust transferring property to or conferring any beneficial interest on the settlor's former spouse is revoked upon the divorce or the annulment of the settlor's marriage, and such property or beneficial interest shall be administered as if the former spouse failed to survive the divorce or annulment; or

2. An action is filed (i) for the divorce or annulment of the settlor's marriage to the settlor's spouse or for their legal separation or (ii) by either the settlor or the settlor's spouse for separate maintenance from the other, and the trust was revocable at the time of the filing, then a provision of such revocable trust conferring a power, including a power of appointment, on the spouse or nominating or appointing the spouse as a fiduciary, including trustee, trust director, conservator, or guardian, is revoked upon the filing, and such provision shall be interpreted as if the former spouse failed to survive the filing.

E. If the provisions of the will or revocable trust instrument are revoked solely pursuant to this section, and there is no subsequent will, trust revocation, other than under this section, or inconsistent codicil or amendment, the provisions shall be revived upon the testator's or settlor's remarriage to the former spouse. Nothing in this section shall prevent a testator or settlor from transferring property to, conferring any beneficial interest on, conferring a power on, or nominating or appointing as a fiduciary a spouse or former spouse subsequent to a revocation under this section.

F. Except as provided in this section, no change of circumstances shall be deemed to revoke a will or trust instrument.

G. This section applies to trusts and trust provisions only to the extent the event causing the revocation under subsection D occurs on or after July 1, 2018.

1968, c. 656, § 64.1-59; 1985, c. 429; 2012, c. 614; 2018, c. 44.

§ 64.2-413. Effect of subsequent conveyance on will.

Except for an act that results in the revocation of a will pursuant to this article, any conveyance or other act done subsequent to the execution of a will shall not prevent the operation of the will with respect to such interest in the estate as the testator may have power to dispose of by will at the time of his death.

Code 1950, § 64-61; 1968, c. 656, § 64.1-61; 2012, c. 614.