Wills made through this site are designed for the laws of England and Wales and we make no guarantee that they will be valid under Scots law.
When it comes to making a Will, there are several important differences between the laws and Scotland and those in England and Wales.
On this page:
- Who can make a Will?
- Witnesses and beneficiaries
- Signing the Will
- What happens upon marriage
- What happens upon divorce
- Laws of Intestacy
- Legal Rights of inheritance
If you are domiciled in Scotland (meaning that Scotland is your permanent home), you can make a Will as long as you are: 1. at least 12 years old, and 2. of sound mind.
For further information about these requirements, including exceptions, see Who can make a Will?
Under Scots law it is possible for a witness to inherit from a Will.
However, it is still not recommended to ask one of your beneficiaries to witness the Will, as this has been known to result in Wills being challenged in the courts.
The age for accepting legacies is 14 for boys and 12 for girls.
Signing the Will
Under Scots law, your existing Will is not automatically revoked when you get married or enter into a civil partnership. A spouse has 'prior right's and can not be excluded from inheriting.
It is therefore very important to review your Will as soon as possible after marriage.
Under Scots law, gifts made to your spouse in your Will are not automatically cancelled when you get divorced or your civil partnership is dissolved.
It is therefore very important to review your Will as soon as possible after this happens.
Referring to 'my children' includes adopted children but not step children. Under Scots law, if you have a child after making your Will but the Will does not include instructions for this possibility, the child will still have the right to a part of your estate.
It is therefore very important to review your Will as soon as possible after the birth of a child.
The law governing what happens to the estate of someone who dies intestate (without having made a Will) are quite different under Scots law. For more information on this, see Laws of Intestacy in Scotland.
It is not possible under Scots law to make a Will that disinherits your spouse and descendants (children and grandchildren). Scots law gives your spouse and descendants legal rights to inherit part of your property.
If you live in Scotland, the law gives your spouse and dependants certain legal rights to your what is called your 'moveable property', which means money, cars, jewellery, antiques and so on, but not land or houses.