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Borkowski's Law of Succession

Borkowski's Law of Succession (4th edn)

Brian Sloan
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date: 03 October 2023

p. 1656. Revocationlocked

p. 1656. Revocationlocked

  • Brian SloanBrian SloanCollege Lecturer in Law, Robinson College, University of Cambridge


This chapter considers the concept of revocation. Revocation is literally the action of ‘calling back’, in the sense of rescinding or annulling. It is a fundamental characteristic of wills that they are revocable wholly or partially at any time before a testator’s death. The chapter also considers topics related to revocation: alterations, revival, and republication. A will may be revoked by four different methods: by marriage or civil partnership; by another will or codicil; by a duly executed writing; and by destruction. Revocation by marriage is governed by s. 18 of the Wills Act 1837. A testamentary gift to a spouse will fail if the marriage/civil partnership subsequently ends in divorce/dissolution or nullity, but strictly this is not a method of revocation.

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