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Wills...what are they all about?
For your Will to be completely legal it must:
To make Wills lawful, you have to be witnessed signing your Will. The witness would at that point sign to legitimize this. If your children are under the age group of 18, you need to state who you wish to be their legal guardian.
- Be over the age of 18
- Must be voluntarily making your Will
- Be sound of mind
- Must be formal writing
Why do I need a Will?
Wills…why do we need them? If you pass away without setting up a Will, your property may not be transferred to the individual you want.
It can also lead to certain family or friends being cut off and you can avoid paying unnecessary inheritance tax.
According to the Law Society, in 2014 a shocking £8 million worth of property reverted to the Crown due to people dying intestate.
Under the regulations of intestacy, without a Will, only direct family members can inherit your assets, which can cause tension between the ones closest to you.
- If you don’t want the Government to decide who gets your assets…You need a Will!
- If you haven’t updated your Will in the last 3 years?… You need a Will!
- If you have children/grandchildren…You need a Will!
- If you have divorced, married or remarried…You need a Will!
- If you or your partner have stepchildren…You need a Will!
- If your financial situation has changed…You need a Will!
If you wish to gift a specific item like a ring for example to someone in particular you are able to outline this also in your Will.
You also have the option to donate money to charities or organisations of your choice.
Wills cannot be changed once you and the witness have signed. To make any changes to your Will, you will have a codicil. The codicil signed and witness the same as Wills. You can have an unlimited amount of Codicil.
- You would need to make a new Will if there has been major changes.
- Your new Will should state that it revokes all previous Wills and Codicils.
- After you new Will has been officiated, you can now destroy you old Will.
What is a Will Executor?
A Will Executor is the person who is responsible for dealing with the estate once you have died. The Will Executor will be selected by you, so you will have to make sure you choose someone trustworthy who will fulfil your wishes.
This needs to be a person you can count on to adhere to your directives in your Will so that your beneficiaries receive their fair share of your estate. You are allowed up to four Will Executors, our Estate Planners advise you to have at least two in case one dies.
Will Executor duties
Will Executor duties can include:
Open an Executor bank account
This is a bank account where your Wills Executor can hold your assets once you’ve passed.
Valuing the estate
This is where your Wills Executor calculates how much your estate is worth by going through your assets.
Handling any outstanding debts
Once your Wills Executor has calculated your estates worth, they would have to pay off any outstanding debts before the estate has been divided.
Distributing the estate
Your Wills Executor will distribute your estate as instructed in your Will.
Checking if they have a funeral plan
Making funeral arrangements
With a pre-paid funeral plan, your funeral won’t have to be paid for out of your estate
Funeral arrangements will be made in line with wishes that have been outlined in your Will.
Completion the accounts
This would be an overview of all your finances. It would detail what debts have been paid and how much of the estate was distributed. This will then be signed by the Beneficiaries.
Can Executors be Beneficiaries?
“Can Executors be Beneficiaries” is a question that often comes up! There is often a misconception that you can’t. This is untrue! It is in fact very common! The majority of people choose either their spouse, civil partner or their children.
Making a Will is something people often put off doing because they think they are either too young or haven’t yet decided what will become of their estate.
Call Now if you are facing any of these scenarios:
- If you own assets with someone who you are not married or in a civil partnership.
- If you desire to leave your assets to a dependant who is incapable to care for themselves.
- If there are several family members who can make a claim on your Will.
- If you own a company and want to make certain it is entirely protected.
Everyone needs to have a Last Will and Testament.
If you live in the Reading, Berkshire area and are looking for professional Will Writers to assist you with making Wills, changing Wills or updating Wills then you are in the right place.