There are three types of people who can make a claim on your Estate, they are your legally married spouse or civil partner, your children and anyone who has been financially dependent on you in the two years immediately prior to your death.
For most people when they make their Will, they tend to ensure that they have made a provision for those that fall into these categories. But all families are different, and we all know that situations aren’t always straightforward and sometimes utilising a non-provision clause within your Will may be appropriate.
If for example you have allowed someone to live with you, perhaps rent free or for very little, it could be argued that provision for them should be made via your Will on the basis that this arrangement made them financially dependent on you, when in reality you were helping someone out whilst alive but had no intention of them benefiting from your Estate when you’ve died. A simple clause stating that with careful consideration you have made no provision for this person should be enough to stop any potential claim. You may feel confident that no claim would be made but as we all know, money can make people act quite differently to how you would expect and planning for different scenarios is always wise.
You may be in the process of a divorce and wish to have a Will in place that specifies your children (or other family member) not your current spouse should inherit your estate entirely. Sometimes people become estranged from their children for all sorts of reasons and they therefore wish to make clear that omitting a child or children from their Will was not an oversight but deliberate.
If you wish you can include the reason why you have chosen to exclude someone, or you can simply state that the exclusion is deliberate. If you include a reason, it is important to remember that once probate has been granted anyone can view your Will online for a small fee of £1.50 and unless you want to air your dirty laundry in public post death (however trendy having a dig at your family in public may be at the moment- Harry I’m looking at you) it may be best to list the reasons why in an accompanying letter to your executors.
For more information on writing your Will or arranging your Lasting Power of Attorney please contact me on 01903 821010 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org.