At Lupton Fawcett, we understand that you want to take care of your family and loved ones should you pass away. Writing a will ensures that your money, estate and other gifts are given to the right people with minimum hassle.
Why Is It Important to Make a Will?
If you don’t make a will, or are not married when you die, the law will decide how your assets are distributed in accordance with the rules of intestacy. This means that those you care about may not receive the items you intended on leaving to them.
If you were to die before being divorced, your spouse would inherit all, or at least a large part, of your estate unless you make a will leaving it to someone else. If you and your spouse own property jointly (for example, your house or a bank or building society account) and you were to die, your spouse would automatically inherit your share of that property even if a will has been made, and even if a divorce has taken place.
To prevent these things from happening and to take control of what would happen to your estate, you should do two things. First, make a will to specify who you would like to inherit your estate. Wills can also be used to ensure your children are taken care of by appointing an appropriate guardian. Secondly, change the way in which the joint property is held. In the case of a house, this can be done by serving a Notice of Severance on your partner.
Our lawyers are on hand to help you take control of your assets by providing guidance on how you should go about writing a will and giving you an estimate of what it would cost to take these simple steps. We can then take you through the steps involved in making sure those you care about get the inheritance you intended for them. We may also be able to help identify other steps you should take, for example, to reduce potential tax liabilities
No matter your circumstances, our solicitors can provide advice on how best to deal with issues, including preventing your partner from automatically inheriting the estate by serving a Notice of Severance on your husband or wife.
Making a Will
To make a will, you will need to share details of everything you own with your solicitor. This includes:
- Stocks and shares
- Bank accounts
- Insurance policies
- Owned businesses
Then you must decide who receives what when you die and whether there are any conditions to them accessing these assets, for example, any young children may need to reach a certain age before being allowed to access their inheritance. You must also declare your family status, so your solicitor can help you avoid any legal pitfalls that may result in a loved one not receiving what you wanted to leave to them.
If you have any children under the age of 18 when you die, you can use your will to name who will be their legal guardian. Your will can also be used to put instructions in place for your funeral and decide what will happen with your digital legacy – your social media accounts and other online accounts.
Finally, you must choose who will be in charge of carrying out the administration of your will. These are called executors and can be friends, family members or a professional such as a solicitor. It is advised that you should choose at least one executor who has experience with financial matters and ask them before naming them in your will as it can be a heavy duty.
Contact Us for Help
The team has provided many clients across Yorkshire with advice on how to write a will. For an initial discussion on the specific details of your case, contact our offices based in Leeds, York and Sheffield by using the details on the enquiry form.