Writing a Will – Everything you Need to Know
Writing a Will might not be the first thing you want to think about. But getting your affairs in order while you still can is incredibly important. From Estate And IHT Planning to private wealth management, it’s a good idea to think about what you own and what you want to happen when you pass away. Contrary to popular belief, Will writing doesn’t have to be depressing. Instead, it can be an empowering procedure allowing you to take control of your assets and wishes while thinking of the future of your loved ones.
With this in mind, let’s take a closer look at what you need to know about Wills and why having one is a good idea.
Writing a Will allows your voice to be heard
First things first, writing a Will isn’t a death sentence. Nor should it be something you rush into following an accident or sickness. It’s simply preparation. And it can be updated as your life changes. So any decisions your make are not set in stone. A Will allows your voice to be heard beyond the grave and ensures that:
- Your estate goes to the right people
If you die without leaving a Will, your estate will be shared out according to ‘the rules of intestacy’ which might not be according to your last wishes. After all, if you don’t make it clear what you want to happen, the law will decide what will happen to your estate. This means the people you care about might miss out. – Your dependents are secure
A Will allows you to remain in control of your finances and make future financial plans for any dependants. For example, you could put money aside to educate your children or provide specific instructions about an annual allowance for travel and entertainment. While the law favours blood relatives, a Will also ensures any stepchildren are provided for, according to your wants and wishes. This also applies to any friends or relatives who played a significant role in your life.
- You can choose a legal guardian for your children
If you don’t have a Will when you die, it’s likely the family courts will be involved in finding a guardian for your children. This might lead to decisions you wouldn’t be happy with. So it’s really important to name the legal guardian/s for your children under the age of 18 should something happen to you. – Unmarried partners are protected
If you choose not to get married during your life – that’s fine. But legally it can leave your partner vulnerable if you don’t leave a Will as unmarried partners are often completely unentitled to your estate. Therefore, writing a Will ensures your estate goes to the person/people you love the most. With all this considered, take the time to create a Will you feel happy with. Remember, if you leave nothing to confirm your wishes, the law will act on your behalf.