Everyone should make a will. It’s your chance to decide what happens to your money, your property and your personal possessions after you die.
Without a will, these decisions are taken out of your hands and others will decide who should be the person to deal with your estate (the “executor”). This may not necessarily be the most important person in your life, for example an unmarried partner may not get consulted about your wishes.
So a will allows you to choose the executors. It also enables you to appoint guardians who will be responsible for your children, and it lets you specify how old your children must be before they can get access to any inheritance, while allowing for them to be maintained as they grow up.
You can decide who benefits from your estate, whether friends, family or charities. Your will can set out who you want to be given specific items, and you may include trusts to protect assets. Trusts can be particularly useful if you have complicated family circumstances or if you’re looking to save your family’s inheritance from being taken up in long-term care home fees.
Your will can be used to leave your estate in the most suitable way to save inheritance tax. You may even want to ensure that someone in your family does not benefit or, that if one of your beneficiaries also dies, another person should benefit in their place. You may also use your will to express your requests for your funeral.
Lots of people put off making their will, but you should never leave such important matters to chance.