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Making A Will In 2018- Tips For Getting It Right

 Making a Will is one of the most important legal documents you will conclude. Considering that every year 1 in 3 people die without having a legal document to convey to their families how to administer the estate and distribute the assets in accordance with your wishes, it is crucial to make a will in order to avoid any difficulties. With matters such as the appointment of an executor, funeral wishes as well as the division of assets and any other possession you may have, a Will will ensure that your affairs will looked after and your estate will be distributed in accordance with your wishes.

What should you include in your will?

 When looking into making a Will, your solicitor will give you a number of points you should consider prior to providing your final instructions and specifying what you wish to include in your Will.

Choosing the right Executor

An executor is a person who is appointed in a Will or by the court to administer the estate of the deceased’s person. They have the responsibility of ingathering the financial and various other assets as well settling outstanding bills or any other affairs.

When choosing an individual for this position, it is important to remember that this is a very serious responsibility and therefore choosing the right person for the job is crucial. It is best to consider someone that you can trust and someone who you think to be capable of undertaking this task.

Your solicitor will advise you that it best to appoint another individual who will be able to act as an executor of the estate in a potential event that the first executor is unable or unwilling to act. There is also the potential option of appointing two or more executors jointly, if this is something that you would feel would be more suitable for you. In such situation they would all have to make the decisions in terms of your estate. Your solicitor will be in a position to provide you with details of how such arrangements would work.

Wills Guide 2018

What type of Will should you consider?

Single will

A single Will is a will for an individual. This type of Will is designed for someone who does not require for their partner to have a Will with similar clauses and does not need one that will reflect another Will.

Mirror wills

 Couples or spouses generally use mirror wills. There are two separate Wills and one party singes one Will and the other is singed by the other party. The Wills normally reflect each other, setting out the same wishes they have.

There is of course a possibility for them to have some minor differences between the two Will such as different executors, different funeral arrangements or other differences.

 Trust wills

 There are Wills that can include a Trust. The aim of them is to increase protection of assets for your loved ones. There are a number of types of Trust Wills and they are as follows:

  • Life Interest Trust Wills

This type of Will can help individuals who have assets, various investments as well as properties to protect their value for your loved ones. Life interest trust Will will allow a beneficiary to benefit from the income generated from any investments if you pass away. It will also protect the value of your investments in future.

  • Discretionary Trust Wills

A Discretionary Trust Will allows for an appointment of trustees to manage the beneficiaries inheritance on their behalf. This type of Will ensures that vulnerable beneficiaries, such as children under the age of 18 or adults with incapacity, will have assistance with the management of their inheritance. This type of Will can also potentially assist with Inheritance Tax planning.

  • Property Trust Wills

Property Trust Wills are used when you wish to protect your property or properties. They are used in circumstances when you may wish to include a liferent in a property for a spouse, partner or someone else. Such Wills allow for protection of the value and interests for your loved ones.

Funeral arrangements

Although it is not pleasant to think about making funeral arrangements for yourself, it is best to include a clause in your will that will specify your wishes.  Your solicitor will advise you to consider what type of funeral you would like and whether there are any specific ceremony instructions you would like to leave for your family.

Making arrangements for guardianship of your children

Generally speaking, when looking into making a Will, your solicitor will ask you whether you have any children under the age of 18 and whether you have considered who would look after them. Your solicitor will advise you to consider who would like to appoint as a guardian for you children and they will most likely recommend you should appoint at least two people in an event that one individual might be unable or unwilling to act as a guardian. Again, it is crucial to give careful consideration to the appointment of a guardian.

Who should benefit from my estate and how?

There are a number of things you will need to consider before deciding who should benefit from your estate. In particular, you should consider the assets you have as well as properties and how you wish to divide those in accordance with your wishes.

You should think about whether you wish to leave any specific gifts, monies or items to your loved ones or perhaps for charitable causes as well as what will happen to the remainder of your Estate. Your solicitor will be in a position to advise you various points you should consider when deciding who should benefit from your estate.

Other factors to consider

Making changes to a Will

Although many people tend to think that making changes to a Will can be a quite complex procedure, it is in fact reasonably straightforward. Unless there are a lot of changes you wish to make, your solicitor will advise you to make a codicil. A codicil is a testamentary document, which amends a specific part of your will and is read in conjunction with your will.

The cost of making a Will

Generally speaking the cost of making a Will can vary depending on what you will require and it is influenced by the complexity of affairs such as personal assets, investments as well the number of properties you may have. The cost is normally between £120 and £500 for a single Will and around £200 and £700 for joint Wills. Depending on what your needs and requirements are your solicitor will provide you with a detailed breakdown of the likely costs.

Keeping a will safe

It is important to ensure that your Will is kept in a safe place. Once you have had your Will drawn up, your solicitor will normally make a recommendation to leave your Will with them. This will ensure that your original Will will be kept in a safe place and when required you can easily obtain it from the firm. Your solicitor will give you a copy of your Will, which you will be able to keep with you.

However, if you would like to keep your original Will at home or some other place, after signing your Will your solicitor will issue your original document.

Making a Will is very important and it is something all individuals should consider in order to protect their loved ones and leave instructions on how to distribute the estate. For further advise on what to include in a Will and how to begin the process, contact our professional and experienced team at Jones Whyte who will guide you through the process and answer any questions you may have.

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