You Need To Make A Will
It is simply not safe to assume that by having no Will your assets will still go to the people that you wish to inherit. Without a Will your estate would be subject to the laws of intestacy, a strict set of rules provided by the government.
Instead of this we recommend that you instruct a bespoke Will with the benefit of professional advice. This way you can ensure that the correct people benefit and to the maximum amount possible, avoiding disputes, delays, unnecessary taxes and other avoidable losses.
My Assets Will Go To My Next Of Kin So Why Do I Need A Will?
If you die without making a will then your estate is distributed according to the Laws of Intestacy.
- The laws of intestacy are complex and depending upon your circumstances the regulations may, but more probably will not, produce the result you want
- If, for example, you are a couple but unmarried, the position of the survivor of you will be very different from that of a widow or widower
- If you are married and have step-children their position will be very different from that of your own
- If most of the value of your estate lies in your home it may be that the survivor of you could be forced out of the house to satisfy the financial entitlement of other family members
- The laws of intestacy are not designed to achieve the most financially beneficial outcome for your beneficiaries. They are not set up to save exposure to tax
- The laws of intestacy do not deal with how personal items should be shared out, or with funeral arrangements – and these are common bones of contention for family members
So What Can A Will Achieve For Me?
- A carefully written Will ensures that your exposure to tax (Inheritance Tax, Capital Gains Tax and Income Tax) is kept to a minimum
- If you are a couple it will, if properly drawn, also ring fence the assets of the first of you to die against absorption in residential or care home fees for the survivor of you
- It will ensure that your affairs are dealt with for you after your death by someone you have chosen and trust
- It will fit your own particular family, financial and business circumstances exactly
- Potential beneficiaries of an estate are often very anxious that they do not inadvertently deal with the affairs of the deceased (including funeral arrangements) in a way of which the deceased would have disapproved. A clearly drawn Will will set out exactly what your wishes are and remove that very real anxiety for those involved in sorting out your estate
- If the situation of any beneficiary is less than straightforward – for example if they are going through a divorce or bankruptcy proceedings, have a business which is failing or are in receipt of means-tested benefits – then you can arrange for them still to benefit from your estate without what they are left being vulnerable to a claim by a third party involved in those situations. Similarly, if a beneficiary suffers from a disability or is unable for any other reason to manage money for themselves, their interest can be protected for them