6th May 2020
If recent world events have made you think more seriously about preparing for the worst and leaving a legacy for your future generations then making a will is a good place to start.
Making a will is never an enjoyable task to deal with but often times like this act as a reminder that none of us are invincible and it can be the gentle nudge needed to finally get round to making this important legal document.
When you instruct the services of Lamb Brooks, one of our specialist Wills Solicitors will discuss all the areas you need to consider before putting together your drafted will. There are many thinks to think about, some of which we have outlined below to hopefully give you some inspiration to get started.
If you have a spouse, it is sensible to have a conversation together to ensure that you both share the same wishes and intentions if you are thinking about making mirrored wills for a husband and wife.
For some this will be simple and may name just one or two beneficiaries – such as your each other or your children. For more complicated families, there may be more people to list and divide your assets with. Don’t worry about naming everyone personally in your will. It is understood that new grandchildren or new partners will come along, so you can keep it simple by splitting assets between your ‘children’ and ‘grandchildren’ in equal or specified amounts. Some people decide to leave some or all of their estate to a charity close to their heart. When considering whom you would like to pass your wealth and assets to, think about how you would like to leave money to minors (under 18) and what will happen should you out-live your beneficiaries.
The executor of your estate will have a very important and onerous job of dealing with the administration of your will. They will be required to deal with your solicitor, banks, your finances, property and the division of your possessions and wealth. It goes without saying that you should choose someone trustworthy and reliable. Often people will choose their spouse, but you should also choose others in case you out-live your spouse. Quite often people choose their first-born or most sensible child, a close friend or you can appoint your solicitor to deal with your estate. This is a popular choice for those without a lot of family locally.
The payment of Inheritance Tax (IHT) is processed during the administration of your estate. Tax is payable for those whose estate is valued at over £325,000, so even if you own a relatively modest property without a mortgage, then you may be subject to the tax. There are ways of mitigating the amount of tax you pay, with careful planning and use of tax allowances. This will help you to be able to pass more of your wealth onto your future generations, rather than the tax man. Speak to our team to see how we can help.
If you are finally getting round to making a will, make sure it is legal and binding. Your will is a key document that you want to make sure is right because when it comes to being used you will sadly not be around to make any corrections should your estate not be handled in the way you intended. Using a regulated firm of solicitors gives you additional peace of mind that your affairs are being dealt with by experienced, knowledgeable solicitors who are acting in your best interests.
Once you have made your will you have two more simple tasks to complete. Firstly, decide on where to store your will. Lamb Brooks offer a free will storage services where your original is kept locked in our fire-proof room and can be accessed as and when you need it. You should also consider keeping a copy of your will and storing it somewhere safely in your home. Secondly, you should tell your executor where your will is stored so that they are able to access it when required.
Modern families often include second marriages, step-children or children from other marriages that you want to leave something for. This can make your will a little more complicated as it is important that your legacy intentions are set our correctly. Other circumstances that can complicate your will would be owning a business, holding property or other assets abroad or if you reside outside of the UK. Speak to our solicitors if you think you have more unique circumstances and they will be able to ensure your will is drafted in the best manner.
If now is the time for you to write a will to protect your family and set out your wishes, then please get in touch with our Private Client Team who will be happy to get things moving for you.
We are working safely to continue to help people get their affairs in order. Call 01256 844888, email firstname.lastname@example.org or speak to our online chat assistant via our website.
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The contents of this article are for the purposes of general awareness only. They do not purport to constitute legal or professional advice. The law may have changed since this article was published. Readers should not act on the basis of the information included and should take appropriate professional advice upon their own particular circumstances.
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