Why are wills so important?
A Will isn’t something that many of us like to think about but did you know that right now, an estimated 56% of adults in the UK don’t have a will in place? That means that almost 28 million adults who haven’t sat and planned what will happen if something unfortunate were to occur.
Making a Will isn’t just about what possessions you have or how much money is in your bank account. Other things that make having a Will in place important are:
Children and dependants – If you have children or dependants that are relying on you then it’s important to put plans in place to protect and look after them via legal guardians should one or both parents die.
If you’re not married – Unmarried partners who have not registered a civil partnership cannot inherit from each other unless there is a will, so the death of one partner could cause serious difficulty for the remaining partner.
Charitable giving – Did you know that Age UK gets 50% of its voluntary income from gifts in Wills? Many people don’t realise it but you can leave charitable donations in a Will and if your estate is subject to inheritance tax then your donation is 100% tax-free.
Reflect your own thoughts – If you die without a will, there are certain rules that dictate how your money and possessions will be allocated but these might not echo your own thoughts, attitudes or beliefs
What if I already have a Will?
If you’ve already written a Will it’s still important to reconsider it from time to time as circumstances and decisions can change which may mean your Will is no longer suitable although it used to be.
So how do I create a Will?
There is often a misconception that Wills are difficult to create but this doesn’t have to be the case.
If you’ve never considered a Will before then a good place to start is Will Aid which has been helping people address their Wills for the past 25 years. The www.willaid.org.uk website has a lot of fantastic and easy to understand information including a Will Planner which you can find by clicking here.
you should give some thought to the major points which should always be included as it’ll save time and costs.
Some of the key things to think about include:
– Who might be the executor of your Will and carry out your wishes as determined by your Will.
– What are your assets such as property, money, pension funds etc that you can leave? And what are your liabilities which may still need to be paid such as a mortgage or a loan?
– Who will benefit from your Will and what might you want them to have
You will then have to look to contact a solicitor to begin making a valid Will. Again, the Will Aid website can help you with this process but another good source for more detailed information on the use of solicitors and the requirements for a valid will is this Advice Guide provided by Citizens Advice Bureau.
If you decide that you want further and more personalised information, the Citizens Advice Bureaus do have a number of ways that you can contact them too, just click here for more information.