Does Divorce Revoke a Will In Oklahoma?

No, getting a divorce does not revoke an Oklahoma will.  Oklahoma law provides that divorce impacts provisions of a will done prior to the divorce by revoking provisions of the will that are in favor of the testator’s former spouse.

Section 84-114 of the Oklahoma Statutes governs divorce or annulment as revoking a will and states:

If, after making a will, the testator is divorced, all provisions in such will in favor of the testator’s spouse so divorced are thereby revoked. Annulment of the testator’s marriage shall have the same effect as a divorce. In the event of either divorce or annulment, the testator’s former spouse shall be treated for all purposes under the will as having predeceased the testator. Provided, however, this section shall not apply if the decree of divorce or of annulment is vacated or if the testator remarries his former spouse, or following said divorce or annulment, executes a new will or codicil which is not revoked or held invalid.

Divorce Revokes All Provisions Of an Oklahoma Will In Favor of the Former Spouse

Under Oklahoma law, if, after making a will, a testator gets divorced or has a marriage annulled, all provisions in the will in favor of the spouse are revoked.  Any provision leaving a bequest to the spouse is revoked, as is any nomination of the spouse as the executor or personal representative of the estate.

The Former Spouse Is Treated As Having Predeceased the Testator

In the event of a divorce or annulment, Oklahoma law treats the testator’s former spouse as having predeceased the testator.  The testator’s valid will can still be admitted to probate and the estate administered as if the former spouse was dead.

When Does a Divorce or Annulment Not Revoke Portions of an Oklahoma Will?

There are a few exceptions to the rule that a divorce or annulment revokes provisions favoring the spouse in a will executed prior to divorce or annulment.

First, if the divorce or annulment decree is vacated, then Oklahoma law does not apply to revoke provisions in the will in favor of the spouse.

Second, if the testator remarries his former spouse, Oklahoma law does not apply to revoke provisions in the will in favor of the spouse.

Third, if the testator, following the divorce or annulment, executes a new valid Oklahoma will or codicil which contains provisions in favor of the former spouse, the will provisions are not revoked or held invalid.

The Takeaway

Oklahoma law contains safeguards to exclude terms of your will in favor of a former spouse.  However, Oklahoma law does not cover every situation, such as gifts to relatives of your former spouse.  Therefore, Oklahoma might take care of some things after a divorce, but it will not always carry out your wishes they way you would have wanted.  Working with an Oklahoma probate attorney to update your estate plan after a major life event such as divorce or annulment is the best way to make sure that your wishes are carried out.

Oklahoma Probate and Trust Information