Having taken the decision to make your Will, possibly for the first time, there are a few points your should consider before committing yourself to an appointment with a professional Will Writer.
The consultants job is to take your instructions and translate these into your Will, creating a document which accurately reflects your wishes. The Will needs to be understood by your executors and most importantly, The Probate Court, to ensure that it is proved quickly to minimise any problems which may occur causing delays and possible hardship to your loved-ones.
There are some important questions which you need to consider before meeting with your consultant. By having many of the answers available it will leave more time to discuss the other important issues which may arise during the consultation.
THE APPOINTMENT OF EXECUTORS
You do not need to appoint other ‘professionals’ to act as an executor or trustee of your estate, unless there is the likelihood of a Trust arising. Professional executors will charge your estate to act, and in many cases, for duties which a layperson could have done. It may be better therefore, to appoint a member of your family, a prime beneficiary or close friend to act. Remember, an executor can also be a beneficiary. If you do need to appoint a professional executor, you could opt for either a solicitor, chartered accountant or a Trust Corporation to act on your behalf. Your consultant will be able to advise on the best option for your circumstances.
APPOINTMENT OF GUARDIANS
If you have children (under the age of 18) you will need to appoint guardians. It may be helpful to make at least one guardian a joint executor as they have a right to money from your estate to help towards the upbringing of your child. This amount can be restricted to a certain amount or could be left in a trust fund. Again your consultant will be able to advise upon the suitability of such schemes. If you have a child with additional needs, who are likely to require specialist care either at home or in the care of the Local Authority, a trust will be required to ensure adequate funds are available for their future.
How you hold your property will determine how it passes on after your death. As ‘joint tenants’ your share will pass on to the survivor automatically. If you wish to pass your ‘interest’ in the property to your children or others, you should hold your property as ‘tenants in common’. More in-depth information can be discussed with your consultant.
Other items to consider will be, specific gifts and funeral wishes.
Only use a trainer professional to help you make your Will.
By Integrity Wills.
Contact: 01844 281013 or email firstname.lastname@example.org