What you put in your Will is entirely up to you but there are some things that Will solicitors recommend that you do not say or that you leave out. At Solomons Solicitors, our team can help you write or review your Will.
Contact our team today to find out how we can help you.
Tips on what not to put in your Will
Our top tips for what not to put in your Will are:
- Wills can be read by anyone as they are a matter of public record after the grant of probate. That’s why if you have things you want to say to your family or beneficiaries it is best to do so in a separate letter that remains private.
- Some families have complex dynamics with first and second marriages, unmarried partners, and step-children. In blended families, there is an increased risk of an estate dispute. A discretionary trust and letter of wishes to your trustees can be more flexible and discreet.
- When you are writing your Will it is tempting to be too precise. For example, leaving the family home at 1 Brown Street to your wife. What happens if you have sold the family home at the date of your death? The legacy to your wife fails and she would have to make a claim against your estate. For example, if your Will leaves your estate to your named children, Jack and Jill, but you then have a third child, John. To avoid John losing out it is best to say in your Will that you leave your estate to your surviving children. This avoids you from having to change your Will if you have additional children.
- Some types of assets because not all property passes by your Will. For example, if you hold a joint bank account with your spouse, they will automatically inherit the monies in the account even if your Will says your share of the money in the account is to go to your grandchild. The same is true if you own a property as joint tenants (rather than as tenants in common). If you do not want a co-owner to automatically inherit your share of a property then your Will solicitor can convert the property ownership to tenants in common when preparing your Will for you. That way you can leave your share in the property to a specific person or it can form part of your estate for distribution in accordance with the terms of the Will.
- Life insurance and pension benefits may not pass under your Will. Sometimes the scheme rules say that the monies in the fund are to be paid to a nominated beneficiary by completion of a nomination form. If a form is not completed the scheme administrators may automatically pass the money to a husband or wife or children.
A specialist Will solicitor can help you decide what should go into your Will and just as importantly what should be left out. By getting expert legal advice on your Will, you can help make sure that the provisions:
- Reflect your family circumstances and creates a Will that works for you.
- Reduce the risk of one of your family members trying to challenge your Will and make a claim against your estate.
- Are inheritance tax and estate planning efficient.
Speak to our Bournemouth-based Will Solicitors today
Solomons Solicitors can help you with your Will so that you understand your options and you have the legal paperwork you need to provide peace of mind.