If you live in Blyth or the surrounding area, you are bound to know the importance of a Will and that a Will is the best way to ensure your wishes are carried out after your death.
Many people, though, do not understand what happens if you don't have a Will. There are a set of rules called the rules of intestacy that dictate who can inherit and in what order they inherit.
If you are married then your estate, if it is worth less than £250,000 or worth more than £250,00 and you have no children, will pass to your wife, husband or civil partner, which is great if you are still with them, but what if you are separated? The rules of intestacy don't recognise separation. Your spouse/civil partner will inherit everything.
How can you stop this from happening? Get a Will written and stored in a safe place that people know about.
What if you have children? Things then get a little more complicated. Again if the estate is less than £250,000 then it all goes to your spouse/civil partner. If it's more, your spouse gets the first £250,000 then anything over that is split in half, with one-half going to the spouse and the other divided equally between your children.
What if you want part of your estate to go to a new partner you aren't married too?
They get nothing under the intestacy rules. Money is split equally between your children, if they are blood relatives. If there are no children then it goes to surviving relatives in a specific order. First, it's your parents. If they aren't alive it goes to siblings or their children/grandchildren. Then half siblings or their descendants, grandparents, uncles or aunts if they are blood relatives or their children, and lastly, half-blood uncles and aunts or descendants.
If you have no relatives that are living, your entire estate goes to the government.
The only way to make sure that your estate is split and given to the family members, friends or even charities of your choice is to make a Will.
Unfortunately, families do fall out and it is not uncommon for family members to be excluded in a Will. If there is anyone in your family who you specifically do not want to inherit, you need a Will to exclude them. This can prevent arguments on your death as your wishes will be written down, legal and be known to everybody.
Having a Will in place makes it much harder to contest how the estate is split up. It's written down and as long as you were of sound mind when the Will was produced it makes it much harder to argue against.
If you have children, you need a Will to specify who you want as their Guardians should you die before they are old enough to look after themselves. Obviously, you should speak to the person or persons of your choosing, make sure they are willing to accept the responsibility of taking care of your children should the worst happen. Guardianship is something that could cause conflict within a family. Writing your wishes down in your Will can stop this conflict from happening.
To have a Will created it is best to approach an experienced and knowledgeable expert in the area. The Will Associates have a consultant in the Blyth area who is happy to talk to you regarding any questions you have and will make sure that the Will writing process is as simple as possible. He will make sure that it is done correctly and that it covers any potential areas that may cause conflict.
So, if you are in Blyth or the surrounding area and would like to arrange a no-obligation meeting with our Blyth consultant, contact The Will Associates on 0800 847 7218. We will make the appointment for a time that suits you and it will take place in the comfort of your own home. You can also visit our Contact Us page and request a callback at a convenient time.