Reasons why you should make a will, and do it today!
More than half of the adult population of the UK does not have a valid will. The latest statistics released earlier this year revealed that the percentage was somewhere in the region of 54% - that’s 54% of people that were dying intestate (i.e. without having made a will).
The absence of a will can lead to uncertainty in how your estate is shared out amongst your family. For some, this will create no problems at all. But for others, this is not so. If you have an accident, or suffer from a heart attack or a stroke, or you are diagnosed with certain age-related conditions such as Alzheimer’s dementia, it may already be too late for you to make a will.
So, here’s 6 reasons why you should make a will:
- It provides choice
One of the key factors in making a will is choosing who you would like to leave your estate to. If you don’t make a will, legislation specifies how your money is distributed. In certain instances, your estate may be left to the government.
A common misconception is that your spouse/civil partner will inherit everything. This is not so in some cases. Part of your estate (depending upon its overall value) may go to your children, or other relatives.
At Smith Partnership, we offer a fixed fee service for drafting wills. What many people believe is that the cost of engaging a solicitor is sometimes not worth it. However, it's actually more expensive to deal with the administration of your estate if you do not have a will. It can create more administrative work through the Probate Registry, not to mention an increase in delays.
- Look after your children
Who will look after young children if the worst happens? You can appoint a person in your will to act as guardian to your children, should you die before they reach 16. When appointed, the guardian will take on your parental rights and responsibilities.
Many parents, when entering into a new relationship or remarrying, worry about how to provide for children from a previous relationship. Making a will ensures that your wishes are carried out.
- Suiting your unique family situation
No-one knows their own family better than you. You decide who counts, and who may need more assistance in the future. In circumstances where that may not be apparent now, you can convey your authority to others that you trust to decide who has a greater need for inheritance, through the use of trusts.
- Avoid squabbles
If your younger family members know what your intentions are after your death, it can result in fewer complications and disputes over who should inherit what in the future.
- Peace of mind
Finally, and arguably the most important, making a will now gives you the peace of mind and certainty that your family will be provided for in the way and the manner that you intend.