New Year, New Will?

Wills and Probate Solicitor Charlotte Day discusses what the New Year means for your Will in her latest blog…

With everyone talking about New Year Resolutions it is easy to get caught up in all the new and exciting things that you might have planned for the year ahead. However, in that list of exciting plans, it would also be sensible to think about some ‘life admin’ tasks, such as reviewing or preparing your Will and Lasting Powers of Attorney.

Why Should I Review My Will?

We recommend that you review your Will every 3-5 years, or sooner if your financial or family circumstances change in the meantime. You might find yourself in a better financial position, you might have more children/grandchildren, or you might now be in a new relationship, or not in one at all anymore.

If you haven’t reviewed or updated your Will recently, and some of these events have happened, then it may be that your Will no longer reflects your updated wishes.

Even if you haven’t had any major life changes in this time, its always worth reviewing your Will in case there are other things that you may now wish to do, such as protecting your assets for against care home fees or a re-marriage by your spouse or partner.

Preparing a Will is also a get opportunity review the level of your assets and whether any estate planning is required to mitigate any inheritance tax.

What If I Don’t Have A Will?

If you don’t have a Will at all, then you risk dying ‘intestate’. If you do die intestate, then you will have no say as to where your assets will go and who will be responsible for dealing with your estate. This could mean that wider family, or perhaps estranged family members, may inherit or must deal with your affairs. If there aren’t any family members alive at the time of your death, then your assets will pass to the Crown.

What About Lasting Powers of Attorney?

It is also worth considering preparing or reviewing your Lasting Powers of Attorney when preparing or updated your Will.

Lasting Powers of Attorney are the legal documents required to give others authority to make decisions about your finances and your health; if there comes a time when you are unable to make these decisions for yourself.

If you do not have Lasting Powers of Attorney in place and you lose your mental capacity, then your loved ones may need to make an application to the Court of Protection to enable someone to make these decisions for you. This is time consuming and costly application, so it is generally better to make sure that you have Lasting Powers of Attorney in place.

How Can Timms Help?

If you have any questions regarding writing or renewing a Will, please feel free to contact me on 01283 214231 or via email at Alternatively, visit the Wills & Probate section of our website here.

Charlotte Day Wills & Probate Solicitor

Charlotte Day

January 2023

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