Agreeing to make mutual wills can sever a joint tenancy

An agreement to make mutual wills concerning property that the parties held as joint tenants can sever the joint tenancy.

In Re Wilford’s Estate ((1879) L.R. 11 Ch.D. 267) two sisters held certain property as joint tenants. They mutually agreed that they would each make wills leaving the property to the surviving sister and after her death to a niece. It was held that this was a dealing by each of the sisters with her half ‘share’ in the property. It is an example of severance by course of conduct.

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