Happy New Year to you all. Sadly it finds us in a new national lockdown but with the hope of the Pfizer BioNTech and the new Oxford AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccines here and being implemented. I have heard many heartening stories from clients telling me that they or a loved one have received their first or are about to receive their second vaccinations. This is a positive outlook in difficult times
2020 presented many challenges which have continued into 2021. Covid-19 brought home how precious our time is and how important it is to ensure we have organised our affairs. We saw record numbers of people considering their finances and how these would be dealt with in the event of their death. This is not something to shy away from but to embrace to ensure that your will reflects your current wishes and your loved ones are left financially secure without the stress of managing and estate without a will or with one that does not reflect the circumstances of the deceased and those left behind.
There are some simple considerations to decide upon when making a new will or updating your current one:
- What does your estate consist of? Be it property, cash or investments, each will have an effect on how your estate is to be administered. You may also need to consider inheritance tax.
- To whom do you wish to leave your assets? Leaving your estate to a spouse or other adult can be a simple matter, but a child cannot own a property so you will need to take this into account if you have a young family. You will need to consider your responsibilities to any dependants which may take the form of a lump sum cash gift or a trust in your will to provide for them in the future.
- Who would be best placed to administer your estate and act as executors? An adult beneficiary would be best placed. Consider what should happen if your preferred executor was incapable of acting due to not being local, being physically or mentally incapacitated or simply not having the time due to other commitments. You can appoint alternative individuals or professional executors if required.
- Apart from disposing of your assets, does your will need to cover any other aspect of your life? You may need to consider the guardianship of minor children or give your executors the power to manage your business interests.
Just as each person is an individual, your will should reflect that individuality and your personal circumstances. Our experienced team of solicitors can help you navigate the task of setting up your will and advise you on any concerns or queries you have.
Lindsay Taylor is an Associate Solicitor based at our Covid-secure Hythe Office. For your conveyancing and private clients needs you can contact CGM Solicitors on firstname.lastname@example.org for an appointment.