LRC Reports

Interpretation of Wills (1982)

Once a will is admitted to probate, doubts may arise concerning the meaning of words used by the testator. Over several hundred years the law has developed a bewildering array of rules concerning the interpretation (or construction) of words used in a will. Many of these rules are archaic and obscure, and their application can sometimes frustrate the courts’ attempts to determine the testator’s intentions. This project considers reforms that will enable courts more easily to ascertain and give effect to testators’ intentions.

Keywords: interpretation; will; testator; construction; intention; latent;
patent; ambiguity; rectification; extrinsic; evidence; estate; beneficiary;
admissibility; execution; gift; class

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