Can you believe that over 70% of the population do not have a current accurate Will. Don't be one of them – if you are, you risk dying intestate (i.e. without saying who should inherit your property). This could leave a very uncertain future for your family, friends and even business partners. We strongly advise that you make a Will and review it from time to time and that you consider taking out an Enduring Power of Attorney. It may cost less than you think - we offer value for money fixed fees for simple Wills.
Free Wills and Deed Storage
We are happy to store your Will and House Deeds free of charge in our own fire proof storage.
BONALLACK AND BISHOP WILLS AND PROBATE GUIDES:Why do I need a Will?
If you do not make a Will:-
- Your family could be involved in unnecessary costs and delay and you will have no control over what happens to your property.
- Disagreements may arise between how your property is split between your family.
- You may not have made enough financial provision for your spouse.
- Your family home may have to be sold to distribute the assets unless you make the position clear to the contrary.
- There might be more tax to pay.
- You could leave your business partners unprotected resulting in a forced sale of the business.
- If you are co-habiting without having married then your partner will have no automatic right to any part of your estate.
In contrast, if you make a Will you do have some control over what happens to your property after you die and can ensure:-
- Those you care for are provided for.
- You decide who should deal with your estate.
- You choose someone to look after your young children.
- You can keep tax payable on your death to a minimum.
- You can remember family and friends by leaving them particular gifts.
- You can avoid disputes over your property from first and second families.
- You can make proper provision for your co-habitee if you were not married.
- You can provide a smooth handover of your business.
- You can consider any foreign property you own.
Do not forget your estate may be far more valuable than you think and will include the following:-
I want to make a Will – What should I do next?
- Your home.
- Your business.
- Your savings.
- Any insurance or pension policies.
- Your personal possessions.
- Second homes.
Before you make a Will you should think about:-
- The nature and value of your property.
- Who you would like to benefit from your Will, including your partner, children, any previous family and your extended family and friends.
- Your business interests.
- Tax implications - especially Inheritance Tax.
- Who you would like to choose to administer your estate.
- Who you would wish to look after your children if you were not able to.
- Do you have any particular wish for your funeral arrangements.
- Do you want to donate any of your organs or allow your body to be used for medical purposes.
Probate and Estate Administration
When someone close to you dies somebody has to deal with their Estate. A person's Estate is considered to be made up of the money, property and any posessions they had at the time of their death. The process of Probate involves collecting any money that is owed, settling any debts due (including outstanding taxes) and dividing the estate amongst the respective beneficiaries.
All assets (including property) in an estate will remain frozen, until the Probate Registry gives the authority (via a document known as a Grant of Representation) to the individual(s) nominated in the Will, the Executor. If you have no Will, then it is up to the most appropriate member of the family to act on behalf of the Estate.
If there is a Will the Estate will pass to the people named in the Will. If there is no Will certain rules known as the Rules of Intestacy will apply.
Whether you are an Executor or the next of kin, our expert lawyers can provide practical guidance to help you deal with the administration of someone's Estate. We can help you determine the size of an estate for Probate and Inheritance Tax purposes. We can prepare an application for the Grant of Representation on your behalf and help you lodge the required forms with the relevant organisations to collect monies due to the Estate and settle outstanding debts.
We can arrange the transfer or sale of any shares and work with our residential property lawyers to handle the sale of any property or land owned by the deceased.Tax Planning – Can I Save Money?
Inheritance tax is no longer just for the rich. With the average house now worth over £200,000,more and more people are at risk of incurring a substantial inheritance tax bill on their death. Don’t leave it to chance – speak to one of our tax planning lawyers now – you could find yourself saving tens of thousands of pounds.