Creating a legally valid will is very important for anyone who is in a relationship with an Israeli partner.
It’s even more important if one person in the couple has children from a previous relationship.
Our firm has handled dozens of cases of mixed foreign-Israeli couples who neglected to make a will, or who felt uncomfortable asking for a legal will from the other partner (spouse). This will could have taken care of the partner (spouse) in the event that one of them passed away, or was in need of guardianship.
Without a will, in the event that the Israeli partner in the relationship passes away, their foreign spouse can be left with no rights, money or property. In addition, there is an immediate threat to their Israeli visa/citizenship.
A person leaves their property to whoever they wish in their will, even if the property would not normally be granted in this way according to the law. For example, someone who is married with children will leave their property to their spouse and offspring when they die. But if the person has made a will that sets out different arrangements, the courts will accept the will and grant the property to whoever the deceased wishes.
Another example is someone who has given part of their property to one child during their lifetime, and specifying in the will that they want the rest of their property to go to their other child when they die.
A further example is if someone divorces their spouse and then begins living with someone else in a new relationship. (“common law”). Making a will ensures that there won’t be complications between the ex-spouse and the “common law partner.”
A will should be made early on. No one can predict the future and making a will at a relatively young age could help prevent unforeseen problems later on.
A will continues to be legally valid as long as the testator hasn’t changed it, so there is no statute of limitations on it. A will can be changed very easily if needed.
Because the will is read only after a person’s death, the person’s true intentions must be clearly written down, and worded in such a way that no legal issues can arise and so that no one could interpret the will however they like. This will make sure the inheritance is split properly. More importantly, the will needs to be made in accordance with Israeli law in order to avoid legal issues or even the complete annulment of the will.
It’s recommended to speak with a lawyer who has experience making wills, or even a notary if needed. A will made by a professional that meets legal requirements will give a couple the peace of mind to know their property and assets will be handled as they wish after they die.
You can give the will to the registrar of succession and you should leave a copy for the lawyer who made the will.
Ram Schachter law office has been involved with making dozens of wills, depositing them and authorizing them with the registrar of succession and the court for family matters.