lasting power of attorney
trusts & Inheritance tax
Why Make A Last Will and Testament?
If you die without a Will you die ‘Intestate’ which means the Courts will write one for you and your estate will be distributed in accordance with strict rules. Ultimately meaning that your assets go to people that you may not have chosen to benefit.
Even if the Intestacy Rules do reflect your wishes, the probate process can be much longer, more complicated and inevitably more expensive. You might also leave your family with a legal and financial mess to sort out. Having spent a lifetime working to build up an asset base, don’t you want to control who inherits it?
Many people try to save money by writing their own Will. This is often a false economy, as probate lawyers say they earn far more from sorting out incorrectly drafted homemade Wills than they do from the modest fee they charge for a professionally drafted Will. If you make a mistake in your Will, your beneficiaries pay the price. If an insured professional makes a mistake, their Professional Indemnity Insurance will cover any loss to your estate.
There are a number of different factors that must be considered when deciding how to draft your Will. These include the laws relating to taxation, property law, succession, family law and social care. It takes years of study and many hours of ongoing training each year to keep up to date in these areas. Can you afford to take the risk with the financial security of your family?
We all know the importance of making a Will yet only about a third of us get around to making even basic provisions for our loved ones. Having stressed how important it is to make a Will, we must also recognise that a Will has many limitations. We are often asked to draft Mirror Wills that leave “everything to each other, and then to the children”. Drafting simple Mirror Wills fail to provide any flexibility for a change of circumstances in the future and can lead to a significant loss of assets.
So, if you are worried about:
- Losing your home to pay for care
- Your loved ones being disinherited
- Vulnerable Loved Ones
- Unnecessary Tax Bills
- Guardianship of minors
Or asking yourself “How can I really protect my wealth and my family”?
The answer is, of course, to have an expertly drafted Lasting Will and Testament