Writing your Will
Writing your Will is possibly something you’ve been putting off for years. However, understanding the importance of making a Will and seeking advice should really be on your to-do list.
If you have a Will when was the last time you reviewed it? A change in circumstances such as; death of a beneficiary or executor, moving home, change in financial circumstances, the birth of a grandchild, marriage or divorce, are just a few reasons why you should review your existing Will.
Essentially a Will decides how you want your estate to be distributed when you die.
What will a Will do?
Let’s look at the legal side first.
A Will is a legal expression that allows you to document your final wishes, leave specific items and distribute your estate as you see fit.
It’s all about personal choice
There is often a driving force behind planning your Will, life changing events, illness, financial circumstances or the loss of a friend or family member can all be catalysts for starting the process. There is no law to say you must have a Will, however, it really is the only way to make sure your wishes are carried out.
Within a Will you can;
- Safeguard your assets
- Provide for children
- Ensure your partner inherits
- Arrange financial provision and guardianship for children
- Be tax efficient
- Minimise potential family disputes
- Make arrangements for pets
- Protect digital assets
- Arrange who you want to manage your estate
- Leave legacies to charity
Without a valid Will, intestacy rules apply.
Which can mean:
- Children may not inherit
- As Common law/ husband/ wife does not exist, partners may not inherit, including cohabiting couples who have children together
- Your estate might face higher tax and administrative charges
- Delayed distribution of your assets
- More potential for family disputes
There is no up side to not having a Will.