Conveyancing Portal

Why Everyone Needs a Will

04/07/2024

Making a Will is a must for everyone. However, less than half of UK adults have one and fewer still have spoken to anyone about what should happen to their estate upon their passing. 

Many people put off making a Will because they think it’s too expensive, they’re too young, or because they believe their estate isn’t worth enough. However, having in place a valid Will is essential to ensure that your assets and possessions are distributed according to your wishes after your death and is crucial for us all. 

In this blog, our specialist Will Writing Solicitors answer some frequently asked questions about Wills. 

What is a Will? 

A Will is a legal document that sets out what happens to your money, property and possessions after your death.  

Certain criteria must be met for your Will to be legally valid. You must: 

  • Be aged 18 or over. 
  • Make it voluntarily. 
  • Be of sound mind. 
  • Make it in writing. 
  • Sign it in the presence of two witnesses over the age of 18, neither of whom, nor their married partners, are beneficiaries in your Will. 
  • Have it signed by your two witnesses in your presence. 

Why should I make a Will? 

Making a valid Will is the only way to ensure that your wishes are followed, and your instructions are carried out after your death, providing clarity and valuable protection for your loved ones.  

When should you make a Will? 

Everyone should have a Will. As long as you’re over 18 years of age, you’re never too young, too poor, or too busy to make your Will. 

Significant life events such as a birth, marriage, or a death can affect the validity of a Will, or require that you change its contents, and it is recommended that you should review your Will every three to five years to ensure it remains up to date. 

How much does it cost to make a Will? 

At Russell & Russell, our qualified Will writers can draft your Will from just £175 + 20% VAT (£210 inclusive of VAT) for a single Will and £300 + 20% VAT for a double, or mirror, Will (£360 inclusive of VAT).  

Should your circumstances change, we can also help you make alterations to your Will. 

It typically takes between two and three weeks to draft your Will, although we can agree faster turnaround times for more urgent situations.  

We can even visit you in your own home rather than you visiting our offices if that is easier. 

To find out more about our Will writing services in Bolton, Chester and across the North West, or to speak to one of our specialist Wills solicitors, call us today on 0800 103 2600 or click here to request a call back.  

Do you need a solicitor to write a Will? 

Although it can be tempting to write a Will yourself by using a DIY template you find online, this can be dangerous and lead to complications and potential challenges further down the line. 

Choosing a regulated, experienced Wills solicitor to help write your Will ensures that it is correctly drafted, accurately reflects your wishes and minimises the risk of disputes, providing valuable peace of mind and affording better protection for you and your loved ones.  

Seeking the advice of a solicitor that specialises in Wills can particularly help if you share a property with someone who is not your husband, wife, or civil partner, you wish to make provision for a dependant who cannot care for themselves, or your permanent home is not in the UK. 

Click here for more reasons why you should use a solicitor to write a Will. 

What should be included in a Will? 

Before making your Will, you should consider the following:  

  • What your estate comprises. 
  • Who you want to benefit from your estate. 
  • What you want to gift and to whom. 
  • Who you want to administer your estate when you die. 
  • Who you want to appoint as guardians for any children you have. 
  • Any tax that may be due on your estate. 
  • Your funeral plans. 

What happens if you die without a Will? 

Dying without a Will means that you die intestate, and your estate is divided according to a strict hierarchy, which means your assets do not necessarily pass to who you want them to. 

Under the rules of intestacy, if you’re married, your partner will inherit the first £322,000 along with all your personal possessions. Anything above that will be split in half, with one half going to your spouse and one-half to your children in equal shares.  

If you’re not married it will follow your bloodline, passing to your children, grandchildren, parents or siblings. If you die intestate and have no family to inherit, your estate will be passed to the Crown. 

Unmarried partners do not automatically inherit under the rules of intestacy, meaning Wills are especially important for cohabiting couples.  


Wills Solicitors Near Me 

Russell & Russell Solicitors is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), and our wills and probate department has extensive experience in will writing, probate and asset management. 

We are also accredited by the Law Society’s Wills and Inheritance Quality Scheme, which sets the benchmark for best practice and transparency in providing wills and estate planning services. 

Moreover, all of our Wills and Probate team are qualified members of the Association of Lifetime Lawyers, an independent organisation of legal advisers who provide specialist legal advice for older and vulnerable people, their families and carers. The department is also a dementia-friendly business. 

To find out more about our experienced team of wills and probate lawyers and legal advisers, please click here. 

Please note that this article is meant as general guidance and not intended as legal or professional advice. Updates to the law may have changed since this article was published. 



 


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