Arranging or Changing my Will
Many people are curious to find out more regarding arranging or changing a Will. Also, many people are unaware that unless a planned marriage is specifically referenced in your Will, marriage revokes any pre-existing Will.
Also, upon divorce, your spouse will no longer benefit from your Will and any gifts awarded to them may lapse unless otherwise accounted for.
Many people are understandably reluctant to approach a solicitor due to concerns about the costs they may incur.
I Don't Need a Will!
That's right, YOU don't need a Will.
Upon death, you will no longer be here to ensure everything you own (your estate) passes to those you wish it to.
Without a Will, your estate will ultimately pass according to the Law of Intestacy.
If married, your spouse will inherit all your personal belongings, the first £250,000 of your assets and 50% of all your assets over and above this amount. The balance is shared equally between any children.
This also applies if you are separated but not yet divorced from your spouse!
If you have no spouse then your estate is shared equally between any children.
If no spouse or children then the order of inheritance moves to your parents, then siblings then aunts, uncles, cousins, etc.
An unmarried partner has no legal right to inherit anything from you.
Estranged and half-blood relatives are included in this law of intestacy.
Thus, YOU may not need a Will but for those you leave behind, a Will is absolutely vital.
For estates where there is no property to be inherited and only a few thousand pounds in savings, with a Will it is most likely that there will be no need to apply to the Court for Grant of Probate, saving the Court fee of £215.
Without a Will, there is no way to avoid this fee as someone must apply to the court to become the representative of the estate.
Please note that for estates valued below £5,000 there is no court fee.
I Already Have a Will!
Is it dated, signed & witnessed? If not, your Will is not legally valid and is of no use.
Is it your original Will or a photocopy?
Only the original signed & witnessed document can ensure that your wishes are honoured when you pass away.
Have a firm of solicitors or Will Writers installed themselves as an executor of your Will?
If so, it is highly likely that that your estate will incur thousands of pounds in additional unnecessary Professional Executor legal costs upon your death.
Have you nominated substitute executors, guardians and beneficiaries in your Will in case that your desired executors, guardians and beneficiaries predecease you?
If not, this will render your Will fully or partially invalid and risk your
estate not being distributed as you wish and your children not being cared for by your desired guardians.
Are you concerned that someone undesirable may contest your Will?
If so, it is important to expressly exclude them from your Will and not simply ignore them.
Please Recommend our Free Will Consultancy Service