Writing a Will. 

Why Do I need a Will?

Will Writing Services.

Everyone should have a Will, but two out of three people have not yet made a Will and those that have, may not have the correct Will in place.

An estimated 70,000 people per year have to sell their homes to pay for care.

A large proportion of any inheritance is lost in future divorce settlements, to creditors or bankruptcy and unnecessary taxation.

If you own a business or a share of a business, then your spouse / partner and children may not inherit your share of a business.

There are many specific reasons for writing a will, including:

Children

If you have children or step-children under 18, you should choose who will look after them and ensure there are funds to help.

Newly Married Couples

If you made a Will before you got married or remarried you will need to re write your will as it will no longer be valid.

Property

‘Joint tenant’ mortgages automatically pass to the other owner. If you’ve a ‘tenants in common’ mortgage, it’s important to say what happens to your share of the house. If you own a property overseas, inheritance laws may be different to the UK.

Small businesses

If you’re a sole director, it’s possible that if you die without executors, nobody can authorise payments (including to staff), so your business could collapse.

Unmarried couples

The law doesn’t really recognise this, so don’t expect anything to go to your partner if you don’t make a will.

Divorced

You may want to update your will to include what happens to your assets if a previous partner remarries.

Specific funeral plans

If you know what you want your funeral to be like, you can detail it so that your family doesn’t have to make the decisions.

Change in circumstances

Update your will when you marry, divorce or have kids

Pets

Decide what should happen to family pets.

WHY DO I NEED A WILL?

Protecting Your Wealth

The vast majority of people put off making a Will for a variety of reasons, either believing that the people they would wish to inherit will automatically do so, or because they don’t think it is relevant to them at this particular time.

The reality is that you can put off making a Will until it is too late and this poses all sorts of problems for the people left behind and could mean that some, or all of your inheritance, either goes to the wrong person or to the state.

Everyone needs to make a Will. In particular, anyone with dependant relatives must do so. Anyone who owns a property or has any type of asset which you would wish relatives, friends or charities to benefit from should also make a Will.

Making a Will enables you to plan exactly what will happen to your property (estate) following your demise. This ensures that those you would like to benefit actually do so, in accordance with your wishes and at the same time avoiding any disputes between relatives.

To reduce inheritance tax

If you die intestate (without a will) there are strict laws about to whom and how your estate is distributed (see HMRC for what to do). This causes two problems. First, the money may not go where you want, and secondly, it’s likely to be inefficient for inheritance tax purposes.

The law says you pay 40% of any assets worth over £325,000 that you leave, so those with valuable houses or larger estates could pay a fortune. Yet there are many legal ways you can plan ahead to reduce this.