25 Jan 2018 Posted in Wills & Estate Planning 

What could you save by writing a Will?

Rebecca Broom Posted by Rebecca Broom, Associate Solicitor - Wills, Trusts & Probate

What could you save by writing a Will?

Life can be complicated, but writing your Will doesn’t have to be. Our team of experienced solicitors are specialists in setting up Wills for people with complex family or financial situations.  We can help you understand how to best arrange your estate in order to protect your family and your wealth in the long term.  

Why use a solicitor?

It can be tempting to opt for an online ‘do-it-yourself’ Will. However, in our many years of experience, we know that lots of ‘homemade’ Wills fail and lead to drawn out, expensive family disputes.

Research found that poorly drafted or ineffective DIY Wills are to blame for a prolonged probate ordeal for 38,000 families a year. It is estimated that up to 10% of the value of a person’s estate can be absorbed in additional fees as a result of an ineffective Will. The average estate in the UK is £160,000, this could equate to as much as £16,000-worth of probate fees.

By taking legal advice from specialist solicitors and having a professional Will made, you can be sure that your estate will be passed on as you intended.

Writing a Will - How can we help?

Inheritance Tax

  • A Will can help you reduce the amount of Inheritance Tax that might be payable on the value of property or financial assets you leave behind. If your home makes up a high proportion of the value of your estate, your surviving spouse or partner might be forced to sell the property to pay tax or fulfil your bequests to family members.
  • We can ensure you make full use of the Transferable Nil Rate Band and Residential Nil Rate Band which could save your estate (for a couple) up to £270,000.
  • If you have previously made a tax saving/discretionary trust Will then these need to be reviewed as a result of the governments’ new tax allowances as it may mean you need to make changes to qualify for the Residential Nil Rate Band.

Business Owners

  • If you have a business then you need to have a Will that allows you to benefit from special allowances of Inheritance Tax

Divorced? Children from a previous relationship?

  • If you have remarried, you can make provisions in your Will for any children you have from previous relationships to ensure they receive a share of your estate whilst still providing for your spouse.
  • If you are living with a partner but you’re not married, dying without a Will means your surviving partner won’t necessarily inherit a shared home or your possessions.
  • There is a danger that if you are estranged from your husband or wife, they will inherit the whole receive a share of your estate if you die without a Will, irrespective of your wishes.

 Protecting your children

  • If you have vulnerable children or relatives who are dependent on you, a Will can give you peace of mind that they will be financially secure and protected.
  • If you have adult children who are likely to inherit the family wealth, you can use a Will to protect that wealth from any future relationship breakdown or divorce they may experience.

Professional executors

The person or people you choose to be your executors are responsible for sorting out your estate as you have provided in your Will. Many people also appoint a solicitor as an executor to ensure that the legal, financial and taxation aspects are followed. There are often time-critical things that need to be done such as organising the payment of inheritance tax, income tax and capital gains tax returns as well as ensuring that all the finances are correctly dealt with.

Family members may not have the time or inclination to administer an estate or feel that it is a task that is too complicated. You may have concerns that your chosen executors will not be able to work together to administer your estate and that there is a potential for conflict.

Here at Mowbray Woodwards we have the expertise to act as professional executors and trustees. We often work alongside family members to ensure that whatever the circumstances, your wishes are adhered to.

What happens if I die without making a Will?

The fact is, if you die without a Will your final wishes will be in the hands of the Government’s ‘intestacy rules’.  These rules determine how your bank accounts, securities, house and other assets are distributed, and the people you would want to inherit your estate, might not get anything.

The absence of a Will can lead to serious family disputes and significant stress and upset for loved ones. Get peace of mind that you’ll be protecting your loved ones financially and emotionally with a professional Will, knowing that your final wishes will be respected.

Do it today

We know that seeing a solicitor and making a Will can be daunting, but our friendly team are on hand to guide you through the process.

If you would like to discuss making a Will, please contact one of our specialist solicitors to make an appointment. You can call us on 01225 485700 or email hello@mowbraywoodwards.co.uk

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Rebecca Broom

Rebecca Broom

Associate Solicitor - Wills, Trusts & Probate

01225 485723

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