Wills – Why Lifetime Planning is so important

Why would you recommend that people don’t delay when it comes to making their Wills?

If you do not have a Will, the intestacy rules determine who inherits your estate. This may result in your estate passing to people that you did not intend to provide for. It is a common misconception that a co-habiting couple will automatically inherit from one another. This is not the case under the intestacy rules. Furthermore the intestacy rules only recognise biological and legally adopted children. Therefore if you wish to provide for a co-habiting partner or step-child it is important that you make a Will. If someone is unmarried and has no living relatives, with no valid Will in place, their estate could pass to the Crown. By having a Will in place, it will be both clear who is to inherit and what they are to receive, whether it is money, property or other possessions. This should not only offer peace of mind but also avoid uncertainty, which is often the catalyst for arguments that arise between family members after a death.

What advice would you give those who are looking to sort out their Wills?

Whilst the thought of making a will might be a daunting prospect for some, the pros of doing so greatly outweigh any cons. All adults should make a Will, and should review it to consider if it needs updating. We never know when life can change unexpectedly, and it is important and reassuring to have your affairs in order. Some people prefer to opt for ‘do it yourself Wills’ rather than instruct solicitors. However the laws and regulatory requirements surrounding the making of a Will can be complex. By instructing a solicitor you will have peace of mind that your Will is an accurate legal document devoid of the errors that can lead to disputes and costly legal arguments.