When it comes to making a will it is important to consider all eventualities and to seek professional advice. Arguably a will is the most important legal document you will ever make and making a valid professionally drafted Will is essential.
Bolt Burdon’s highly qualified Wealth and Estate Planning team, who are all members of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners are here to ensure that’s exactly what you get.
We also offer a combined Wills and Inheritance Tax planning service which we call “Peace of Mind”.
Why should you make a Will?
- A valid and professionally drafted Will is the only certain way to ensure that your wishes are carried out when you die.
- You can name the people you trust to carry out your wishes in your Will, called ‘Executors’. This is an important decision. Often a good combination is one professional executor and one family member. We are always happy to offer the services of the partners in this firm as executors and trustees of any trusts within your will.
- You can name Guardians in your Will, who will look after your children if you die before they reach 18.
- You can ensure that your children, or other beneficiaries, do not inherit too early by adding a ‘vesting age’ in your Will. For example, ‘I give the sum of £100,000 to my son on reaching 21 years’.
- Inheritance tax can be saved with expert advice and a carefully drafted Will.
- You can, with Trusts in your Will, ring-fence your hard earned assets for your children from potential predators in the event of divorce or bankruptcy as well help reduce the liability for care fees.
- You may have views about the type of funeral you would like or the disposal of your body, whether by burial or cremation. Your Will is a very good place to set down your instructions. A side letter, which will be stored with your Will, can be used to add further detail.
- A valid professionally drafted will can help avoid wills and probate disputes following your death.
Of course, without a Will you will be relying on laws which date back to 1925 which means that, for example, your husband, wife, registered civil partner or partner will not necessarily inherit all of your assets. They may even have to make a claim against your estate.
A face to face meeting ensures that you get the very best advice.
We need to understand what you are aiming to achieve in your Will and why. Once we have established your requirements and confirmed your instructions we will provide you with a draft document to consider within 7 working days.
We also provide a detailed will summary helping you to fully understand what can often be a complex legal document.
When your Will is ready to be signed we will take the time to explain the will to you fully and act as witnesses to ensure the legal formalities are complied with.
We also store your Will include within the cost in our on-site fireproof facility and send you hard and soft copies for your records.
Regular review of your Will
Once your will is made it is important to continue to review the same whenever there is a change in circumstances. This may be as a result of marriage, divorce, child birth or a financial windfall.
At the very least your will should be reviewed every 5 years.
Please note that marriage will entirely revoke your Will and divorce will revoke all the clauses in your Will which refer to your ex-husband, ex-wife or ex-registered civil partner.
If we have not heard from you in the meantime we will contact you on the 5th anniversary of your will to offer a free of charge will review and to discuss whether any changes are required.
What to do now?
Please call or email us to discuss the next step.
For a downloadable PDF on ‘Peace of Mind’, our combined wills and tax planning service click here.