Around 60% of the UK adult population haven’t put their final wishes into writing according to a recent survey by Unbiased.co.uk. Most of us are aware that it is something we should do, however, the majority of us let the year pass without taking any action.
This could be because we don’t think we have enough assets to make it worth making a Will, or we begin the process and find it a bit too ‘doom and gloom’, and decide we have plenty of time left. However, whilst it can be difficult to focus on, there are many obvious benefits to making a Will no matter how big or small your assets are.
Here’s why your New Year’s resolution should be writing your Will:
Security for your children
If you are parents then it is important that you aim to write your Will as soon as possible. You want to make sure that if the worst was to happen to the both of you, that someone has been appointed the guardian of your children.
Unfortunately, if there is no written Will specifying your wishes, in this case, an application would need to be made to the court. In the event of a dispute, the court would have to decide who the children should live with and there’s a chance this could go against what you would have wished.
Avoid dying Intestate
Last year we wrote a blog about the rules of intestacy and explained that if you die without having legally written a Will you have died intestate. This means your property and assets will be shared out according to these strict rules and your wishes, whatever they may have been, will not be taken into consideration.
If you are in a civil partnership or are living with your partner but are not officially married, the risk is they may end up with nothing if your intentions have not been made clear in a Will.
Furthermore, if you have no living relatives the Crown will end up taking your estate rather than it being left to close friends or anyone else you may have wanted it to go to. To avoid this situation make sure all your wishes are stated in a written Will.
Avoid a huge Inheritance Tax Bill
If you don’t make a Will your estate could be hit with a big unexpected Inheritance Tax bill. There is no way to completely avoid inheritance tax but if you don’t write a formal Will any inheritance tax that your estate has to pay might be higher than it would be if you had made a Will.
It is suggested that 87% of adults in the UK and Northern Ireland that intend to pass on assets to their family have not made any considerations about tax planning.
Give yourself peace of mind
Not only is it important to make writing your will a priority this year for the legal reasons above, it’s also beneficial to give yourself peace of mind knowing that your intentions have been put into writing.
Writing your Will doesn’t have to be a time consuming and costly process but it is worth taking the time to do it so you know that your assets will be divided as you wish.
If you decide that this is the year for you to write your Will or update a previously written one to better reflect your current situation, here at Flackwoods we offer a half hour free consultation. During this session we can guide you through the whole process of writing your will and discuss what needs to be included.
If you have a question, or you require more information and advice, call us on 01403 738777. We’ll be happy to help.