The answer is simple – to protect the people that you love.
Kelly Dawkins, Wills & Probate Executive, TMT Legal Services LLP
Here are some important points to consider if you do not have a Will in place.
Without a Will you would die ‘intestate’. This means that your ‘estate’, (everything that you own at the date of your death), would pass to family members under a framework of rules which are nearly 100 years old, see our Intestacy Rules flowchart here: https://www.tmtlegalservices.co.uk/intestacy-rules
Unless you are married or in a civil partnership, your partner will not automatically inherit from you. He or she would have to apply to Court for maintenance from your estate. This is a long, expensive and stressful process. There is no guarantee that the Court will grant your partner the whole of your estate even if you have lived with them for decades.
Without a Will, even if you are married your spouse will not automatically inherit everything if you have children. With a Will, you can provide for everyone in the fairest way.
Protecting Your Children - Every day, hundreds of children lose a parent. Bereaved children are not automatically taken in by family members. If you and your partner both died without a Will, a Court would take responsibility for your children under the age of 18 and decide what is best for them. The weight given by the Court to the children’s own wishes and feelings would depend on their age and maturity. When you make a Will, you can select your children to be their Guardians.
A Guardian makes decisions about where they live, who they live with, how they are educated and their medical treatment until they are aged 18.
A properly drafted Will, ensures that children of a first relationship are not disinherited if you die before your partner. The correct wording can also ensure that your estate passes to your children when they are mature enough to inherit large sums of money and that they don’t pay excessive amounts of tax.
Your Business - If you are a business owner and you die suddenly, how would your family manage? If a sole trader passes away, their business dies with them. Their business and personal finances would merge. Assets would be used to clear business debts, loans, mortgages, wages, and outstanding invoices. If you are part of a business partnership and you die suddenly, the partnership would dissolve. With a Will, you can direct what would happen to your share. If you have shares in a limited company, you can direct whether your shares are sold or transferred to your family.
Unfortunately, accidents and illness are a common everyday occurrence and affects everyone, whatever their age. A well-drafted Will is vital. It safeguards your family’s and business’ security.
To make an appointment or to find out more about our Family Wealth Services, please contact Kelly Dawkins or Tracey Matthews on 0333 188 4758 or email: email@example.com