Death might be regarded as a taboo subject for many people, but it is important to ensure that your intentions are clearly expressed when considering leaving your estate to your loved ones and writing the will. If you assumed that will writing only applies to you if you are over 65 and well into retirement, think again.
The reality is that there isn’t a specific age when you need to think about the subject. If you are in doubt, you must always remember that a will is necessary if you own anything that has value and wish to make sure that your loved ones are protected.
Do I Actually Need a Will?
If you own a business, have children, live with a partner, or own an estate, all these are good reasons why you need to think about taking out a will. A will helps in protecting your loved ones by making sure that issues such as inheritance tax are all properly addressed.
Who Can Be Included in My Will?
You are free to include anyone you please in the will from a nominated charity to a beloved pet which is left behind, to relatives that you would like to benefit from your wealth. If you have items of sentimental value or family heirlooms, you can consider outlining who to leave those to.
How Can I Get My Will Written?
You can use one of several approaches to get a will written up depending on your financial situation and personal requirements. The options currently available to you include:
- A specialist will-writing services that charges from £75 upwards
- A template document that you buy from a stationery store from as little as £ 10
- A probate expert – Probaters can cater for all your needs from a simple estate to a complex case. The price for this will vary depending on your specific requirements, but it starts from £780 (VAT included).
Who Is Responsible for Carrying Out the Terms of My Will?
Siblings, children, or spouses might seem like the most obvious choice when it comes to carrying out our wishes. However, it is also important to consider an impartial executor to help avoid any potential conflicts that arise, particularly if sibling rivalry is already present. Using a professional also helps you avoid pitfalls in the probate process.
Besides considering who you would like to execute the will, if you have children below 18 years of age, you may also have to think about who you wish to be the appointed guardian in case you pass away before they get into adulthood.
What Is Likely to Happen If I Don’t Write a Will?
In case you pass away without having written up a will, several intestacy rules will be applied automatically, since you will be considered interstate. These include some of the points listed below:
- Children and spouses automatically receive your personal possession and at least £250,000 of your estate.
- If you don’t have any children, then your spouse inherits all the above.
- If you were not married, then your long-term partner will not automatically receive any of your estate, regardless of whether or not you had children together.
- If you didn’t have a partner or spouse, your children will get everything. It is evenly divided up between all of them.
- If you did not have a spouse, partner, or children, your estate will probably go to siblings, parents, nephews, or nieces.
Is a Probate Expert Necessary to Carry Out My Will?
You don’t have to use a solicitor to carry out your wishes if you pass away. However, this may result in claims being made against your estate or result in the will being contested. The latter is quite common with DIY wills since the individual may be unable to properly understand the legal terminology and thus falls into numerous pitfalls as a direct consequence.
To protect your loved ones and ensure that your wishes are properly carried out, employ a probate expert to write up your will. Once the will is written, store it in a safe location and ensure that executors are made aware of this location.