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Why Make a Will - Should You Make a Will

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    Clare Wills, partner in the Wills & Probate Department at Enfield based Vanderpump & Sykes Solicitors, explains why making a will is an efficient and inexpensive way of planning ahead for your children.

    At a glance...
    • Making a Will lets you choose who you want to appoint as guardians of your children, ensures your assets will be transferred to the children, and determines who should handle the paperwork of your estate. 
    • It is never too early to make a Will! 
    • Legal help is necessary when making a Will to ensure it is valid!
    • Don't forget to review your Wills as the family changes, your children grow up, and the value of your assets increase or decrease.
    Should you make a Will?

    If you have a house with a mortgage, a bank account, and children under 16, do you need to make Wills? Yes!

    Parents of young children often postpone making Wills, saying they are too young, healthy or cannot afford the expense. Another reason may be that making a Will evokes feelings and attitudes that people prefer to ignore, such as feelings about death, property, marriage and family relationships.

    Thinking about making a Will can cause worry about care for dependents and some parents permanently postpone writing a Will because they cannot decide who to name as guardians of their children. This means the court have no guidance after the parents die and the Court are left to appoint potentially inappropriate guardians. It is better to name a first and second choice for guardians in your Wills now and to change the appointment later as circumstances change.

    Planning

    For parents of young children, the objectives of making a Will are to:
    • Plan for care of their children
    • Ensure that their property will be transferred to the children
    • Choose who will deal with the paperwork after they have died 
    • Choose who will look after the children's property whilst they are young
    Plan Now

    The time to make a Will is now! Before doing so you should make a list of all assets you own and get a rough value of them. You may be surprised at your worth! Do not forget to include life policies when assessing the value of your estates.

    Even if your affairs seem relatively simple, legal help is necessary in making a Will. It gives you peace of mind and all solicitors are covered by indemnity insurance so if something does go wrong, clients are covered.

    And finally…….

    Don't forget to review your Wills regulalry to make sure they meet your needs. As financial and personal circumstances change, you may need revisions to your Wills to reflect this.

    Clare Wills is also a member of Solicitors For the Elderly (SFE) and can be contacted on: 020 8370 2899 or clarewills@vanderpumps.co.uk.
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