Making a Will: FAQs

Making a Will: FAQs

Below are some of our commonly asked questions and concerns:

Why make a will?

A will is one of those things that everyone should have; and yet only about a third of people ever bother. None of us like to think about our own death but when it happens your property and affairs will need to be dealt with. By making a will, you can ensure they are dealt with in the way that you would want, and that any specific intentions which you have for the disposal of your home, money or possessions are carried out.

A surprising number of people have not quite got around to making a will.   Whether it is a superstitious fear that thinking about death will bring it closer, or whether it is just one of those tasks that never makes it to the top of the list.

Without a will you leave your estate to be divided in accordance with the laws of intestacy which may not reflect your wishes.   Co-habitation, divorce and re-marriage are all increasingly common, without a valid will; partners and step-children may well lose out.

Appointing guardians for your children is also an important reason to make a will making sure that those children are provided for both legally, emotionally and financially.

Worried about paying for care home fees or paying inheritance tax on your estate, taking advice and making a will can assist with both of these facts of life and will hopefully alleviate those worries.

It is not as costly or as complicated as you may think nor will it bring mortality here any quicker.

Contact our private client department on 01473 211121 or email [email protected] for further information.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for general guidance only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. You must consult our solicitors if you require advice on your situation or circumstances.

 

I have nothing to leave…

Are you sure? You don’t need to be wealthy to need a will. If you own your house or have life assurance policies, investments, building society accounts and shares, those assets alone could be worth several hundred or thousand of pounds.

In making a will you are choosing the people you would like to help administer your estate and you are choosing who you would like to leave your money or belongings to however small.   If you would prefer to benefit a charity then a will is a great way to ensure they will benefit on your death.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for general guidance only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. You must consult our solicitors if you require advice on your situation or circumstances.

 

Who would be my executor?

An executor is the person who will be responsible for looking after your affairs when you die. Choose someone who you know and trust. If there is no one that you feel would be able to do this for you, then Gotelee would be pleased to act as your executor, either alone or jointly with a friend or relative.

It is a common mis held belief that a beneficiary can’t be an executor, they can.   As long as your executor is over the age of eighteen, is of sound mind and is someone that you trust then the choice is yours.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for general guidance only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. You must consult our solicitors if you require advice on your situation or circumstances.

 

Everything will go to my nearest relative anyway…

Not necessarily.  You may think that when you die your next of kin for example your husband, wife or child, will automatically receive the whole of your estate. This is not always so and is this really a risk you are happy to take?

If you were to die without having made a will, the laws of intestacy will apply and it is those rules which will govern who gets what. For example, in the case of someone who dies leaving a husband or wife and children, the husband or wife can find that they are sharing the estate with the children, this might not be ideal.

In making a will you are also able to appoint an executor of your choice and you can also appoint guardians for your young children.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for general guidance only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. You must consult our solicitors if you require advice on your situation or circumstances.

 

How do I make a will?

A will has to comply with a number of important rules to make it a valid document.  It isn’t as easy as writing something on a bit of paper or even buying a do-it-yourself kit.  It is very easy to make a mistake.

If you are making a will you will want to ensure that you have had all the options explained to you, you have considered any tax consequences and you have received the best possible advice.  We can meet with you either in the office or at home.

Simply telephone us on 01473 211121 or email [email protected].  We will be happy to look after you.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for general guidance only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. You must consult our solicitors if you require advice on your situation or circumstances.

 

I have written my own will.

Making your own will is a risky business. If there are any issues that are not clear you will not be around to tell everyone what you really meant to say. The end result may be that either your will fails to do what you expected it would do or that it simply does not stand up legally. It is safer to take a solicitor’s advice and have the peace of mind that comes from knowing that your estate will be dealt with as you wished.

Our costs for a straightforward for a single will or a couples mirror image will.  Home made wills can be ok, but if they are not quite right it will cost a lot more than our fees for a will to sort it out.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for general guidance only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. You must consult our solicitors if you require advice on your situation or circumstances.

 

I’m alright, I made a will a few years ago.

Does it still reflect your circumstances? A will that is out of date can be no better than no will at all.

When did you last take a look at it ? Have you had children or grandchildren since then? Have the laws relating to tax changed?

Both marriage and divorce can make your will invalid and leave the laws of intestacy to apply. It is important that your will is kept up to date and that you inform us of any changes in your life that could affect it.

If you have made your will with us we will be writing to you every five years just to remind you to give it that quick once over, better to be safe than sorry.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for general guidance only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. You must consult our solicitors if you require advice on your situation or circumstances.

 

Making a will is complicated and expensive.

Nothing could be further from the truth. A basic will can be prepared quickly and inexpensively. If your estate is more complicated we can advise you of the best way to arrange your affairs so as to cause as few problems as possible for your executors and beneficiaries.

Our costs for a straightforward single will a couple’s mirror image wills.  Call us to ask for the price.

We can either meet with you to take instructions at our offices or at home or you can fill in a questionnaire as a starting point.

For more information contact us on 01473 211121 or email [email protected]

Disclaimer: This information is provided for general guidance only and is not intended to constitute legal advice. You must consult our solicitors if you require advice on your situation or circumstances.

 

 

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