Aren’t attitudes strange when it comes to our property and family? The likelihood, say, of your house burning down is extremely remote but you wouldn’t dream of not insuring it. After all you would not want to leave it to chance, would you?.
But when it comes to a making a Will – in which you dispose of the property you have lovingly preserved over the years most of us (nearly 70%) don’t bother. No, most prefer to leave it to their family to ‘sort it out’ in the belief that ‘they know what I want’.
Touching though such a belief may be it represents a potentially high risk strategy that could have a devastating effect on those who are dear to you. In the absence of a Will what happens to the property that you leave (your ‘estate’) is governed by law in the form of the ‘intestacy rules’.
Those rules may have dire consequences. A surviving spouse may not inherit the whole of the deceased’s spouse’s estate. Children of a previous marriage may inherit nothing at all and the surviving partner where there has been no marriage or Civil Partnership could face major problems.
The problem is those ‘rules’ do not reflect how society has changed – with second (and sometimes more) marriages, extended families and longstanding relationships where the parties have never married.
You have the power to take away those problems by getting a Will in place setting out very clearly what is to happen to your estate when you die ensuring that those who are dear to you are provided for in accordance with your wishes.
Is it easy to make a Will? Well it can be – but many families have ‘complications’ that need to be addressed – that is where a solicitors expertise in the field can help.
Is it expensive? No, a Will can cost as little as £99* – not a lot compared to the value of your estate!
Should I use a solicitor? Absolutely YES. Beware the enticing adverts of companies who hold themselves out as will writing experts offering Wills at bargain basement prices. You should only entrust the making of your Will to a suitably qualified person – a badly drawn Will can sometimes be as much of a problem as no Will at all.
You have the ability to give your family peace of mind. Make a Will. After all, you would not want to leave it to chance, would you?
For professional and specialist advice on the drafting of your Will contact Paul Armstrong or Sally Tipping or Paul Armstrong at QualitySolicitors Oliver & Co on 01244 312306
*until 28 February 2011
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