Have you thought about writing your will but you’re not sure where to start? Does it feel like a huge undertaking that you’re not sure if you’re ready for? Often the process can simply be broken down into four practical questions which form the basis of any will.
What would you like to leave?
This could be specific items such as jewellery, furniture, property or sums of money or it could be broken down into percentages, for example 20% of the total sum of your estate. A key benefit of leaving a percentage means that it doesn’t matter what the actual value of your estate is at time of distribution, the same percentage will be distributed. In this case percentages are often used for monetary sums or if a property is to be split between multiple beneficiaries as house values are known to fluctuate over time.
Who would you like to leave it to?
Consider the people you would like to receive your estate (beneficiaries) and be specific in your will. You will need to have their full name and contact details to hand when you come to formalise your wishes.
This may also be a good point to consider funeral plans and to ringfence a particular sum to organising your wishes regarding your funeral.
Would you like to leave money to charity?
More and more people are choosing to leave charitable gifts in their wills. After catering for your loved ones, why not also consider a charity close to your heart? Gifts in wills help Step One to deliver approximately 33 mental health self-management courses for up to 365 people in Devon with mental health problems. There are approximately 416,755 adults in need of support across the county. What difference could your gift make?
Who would you like to organise the distribution of your will?
Consider who you would like to be responsible for fulfilling your wishes. This person is called an Executor. You can allocate up to four Executors and it is advisable to do so in case one or more die before you. In a similar vein, it is advisable to nominate a person or people younger than you to help ensure that they are available at your time of death to take responsibility for distributing your estate.
It is always worth remembering that if you have concerns or queries, you don’t have to go through this process alone. Many solicitors will offer free advice regarding writing your will. You can often book a no-obligation appointment to talk through your options without having to make any financial commitments. If you’re unsure where to start, we advise you to seek out advice from a professional who will be more than happy to talk you through the process in an accessible way.
Contact our local partner solicitors to find out more:
Step One Charity’s Make a Will Week 2024
During 5th – 9th February 2024, Step One Charity’s partner solicitors and will-writing experts will be donating their time for free, and instead of paying the solicitor, you simply make a donation to Step One Charity. This means that you, in partnership with our local solicitors, are helping to raise essential funds to support people with mental health problems in Devon whilst also receiving expert legal support to write your will.
If you would like to find out more about Step One Charity’s Make a Will Week, please don’t hesitate to call us on 01392 255428 or tap the button below to contact us via email.