The importance of making a will
Some people joke that they have few possessions and even less money, so it’s not necessary for them to make a will. In reality, everybody should have a will written; otherwise the rules that will decide how money, property or possessions are allocated may well not be what the deceased would have wished for. For example, if partners are unmarried or not registered in a civil partnership, without a will they cannot inherit. Beyond that, if there are children, arrangements need to be made for them in the event that one or both parents die. Also, there is the issue of inheritance tax – if a will is in place, it’s possible to reduce the amount of tax payable.
Drawing up a will needn’t be a time-consuming or difficult process, so it’s worth doing it and then having peace of mind. Of course, people’s situations change over the course of time, so it is probably necessary to update your will from time to time. This could happen after a divorce, after a marriage, or after the death of one of your benefactors.
Is a solicitor necessary for drawing up a will?
Technically, a will can be drawn up by anyone – you can even do it yourself. It is recommended, though, that a solicitor check to ensure that what you want to achieve is represented in the will. If there are misunderstandings, having these resolved after your death may incur legal costs, which would obviously reduce the money left in the estate.
There are some common mistakes that people make when drawing up a will – many are easy to avoid. Firstly, in Reading, as in the rest of the UK, there are some formal requirements needed before wills can be considered legally valid. Then, you need to be aware that some of your beneficiaries may pre-decease you, meaning that your will should be updated. However, changes to a will have to be signed and witnessed, or they are not considered valid. Entering into a marriage, a registered civil partnership or getting a divorce all have an effect on a will. You can click here to get more details.
If you are a Reading resident with significant assets, it is even more important to have a lawyer with experience in wills assist you. You need to consider all the money and property involved – even the small savings account or fixed deposit that you’ve almost forgotten about. There are rules that exist to enable dependants to claim if they believe that they haven’t been adequately provided for. Most people will be aware of famous cases where there are large sums of money involved and the will is contested. If the rules are not followed, it is possible that the provisions of a will could be over-turned.
To be sure that a will is legally valid, you need to consult solicitors who are aware of the necessary requirements. Harrison’s Solicitors have been providing clients with wills in Reading for many years.