Need Five Reasons to Make a Will?
SANDY KAUR >
SolicitorTue 3 April 2018
Thousands of people die every year without making a Will or have a poorly drafted Will using a ‘DIY toolkit’.
If you die without a Will your final wishes may well go unheeded and it often leaves your loved ones in a state of limbo and stress at a time when they are supposed to be bereaving your loss.
1. Do you have young children?
If so, it is vital to ensure that you appoint suitable guardians and trustees who will care for your children and manage their inheritance. Their inheritance could be drip fed to them until they reach 25 instead of them receiving their inheritance at the legal age of 18 when they may not be mature enough to handle large sums of money.
2. Do you have a partner you cohabit with?
If you do not have a Will making provision for your partner and you are not married your partner will get NOTHING and will not be provided for even if you have been cohabiting for years. If your cohabiting partner receives nothing then they could try and make a claim against your Estate if you were living together for two years or more but this may involve them having to challenge this through the Courts causing delay, stress and considerable expense.
3. Do you have children from a previous marriage?
If you have re-married or are cohabiting with a new partner and have children from your previous marriage then you will need to ensure that you make adequate provision for your children in your Will. For example, you could leave your share of your home in trust for your children giving your new spouse/partner the right to live in the home for life (or until they re-marry or cohabit with another) and on their death, re-marriage/cohabitation your children will receive their inheritance.
Without making provision in your Will for your children from a previous marriage, your new spouse/partner may receive your Estate leaving your children with nothing or even worse your new spouse/partner may re-marry leaving the Estate to his/her new spouse - so your Estate could end up with a third party!
4. Do you travel abroad?
What would your family do if anything happened to you whilst travelling abroad? Is there a Will in place? Or would they be left in a state of confusion not knowing what will happen and how to sort things out? A carefully drafted Will and a Letter of Wishes provides great comfort to families on death.
5. It is not always about wealth!
Even if you don’t have a lot of wealth, you can appoint executors i.e. people that you trust to ensure that your wishes are adhered to i.e. funeral requests, cremation/burial/service or sentimental items that are important to you/letter of wishes to be read aside your Will to your loved ones.
If you have a house or some savings, you should make a Will but what about making provision for other issues such as your pets, digital assets, passwords and social media accounts, personal belongings?
If there are no surviving relatives who can inherit under the rules of intestacy, the estate passes to the Crown
For friendly and helpful advice or for more information please contact our Wills team on 01733 333333 or contact Sandy direct on 01733 865625.
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