5 Key Signs that You Should Make (Or Update) a Will

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5 Key Signs that You Should Make (Or Update) a Will

Read below about some of the most pressing reasons to create or update a will, and why they mustn’t be ignored.

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Read more about five of the most compelling reasons to visit (or revisit)
your solicitor and work on your will, below.
1.
You Have Had a Child
Becoming a parent for the first time represents
a time of major change
and upheaval. Your routine changes, yes, but so too do your immediate
and long-term priorities, responsibilities and concerns. Suddenly, you need
to think minutes and decades ahead all at once – and confront some major
concerns over the future.
While it may be difficult to think about, we all need to consider what
safeguards lie in place for our children should we pass away.
Taking the time to put firm, practicable plans in place for their futures is
something any parent should do – not least of all for their own peace of
mind.
2.
You are a Newlywed
Getting married is yet another example of major change and (positive)
upheaval in our lives. It is, inarguably, one of the biggest commitments
we can make – particularly in the eyes of the law where, following a
marriage, both individuals’ original wills are instantly revoked unless they
have been made in contemplation of that marriage. As a result the rules
of intestacy will apply.
In other words, if you die prior to writing a new will after your marriage,
everything (up to the value of £250,000) will be automatically inherited by
your spouse. While this may be in accordance with your wishes, it may
mean that certain stipulations you made within your original will are
overwritten.
For instance, if you already have children from a previous relationship,
their right to inherit will be lost unless you update your will.

Most of us would jump at the opportunity to postpone sitting down to work on our wills, but, in reality, most of us have long since run out of excuses. Read more about five of the most compelling reasons to visit (or revisit) your solicitor and work on your will, below.

 

1. You Have Had a Child

Becoming a parent for the first time represents a time of major change and upheaval. Your routine changes, yes, but so too do your immediate and long-term priorities, responsibilities and concerns. Suddenly, you need to think minutes and decades ahead all at once – and confront some major concerns over the future. 

 

While it may be difficult to think about, we all need to consider what safeguards lie in place for our children should we pass away. 

 

Taking the time to put firm, practicable plans in place for their futures is something any parent should do – not least of all for their own peace of mind.

 

2. You are a Newlywed

Getting married is yet another example of major change and (positive) upheaval in our lives. It is, inarguably, one of the biggest commitments we can make – particularly in the eyes of the law where, following a marriage, both individuals’ original wills are instantly revoked unless they have been made in contemplation of that marriage. As a result the rules of intestacy will apply. 

 

In other words, if you die prior to writing a new will after your marriage, everything (up to the value of £250,000) will be automatically inherited by your spouse. While this may be in accordance with your wishes, it may mean that certain stipulations you made within your original will are overwritten. 

 

For instance, if you already have children from a previous relationship, their right to inherit will be lost unless you update your will. 

 

The same goes for those who have yet to write a will. Marriage may well ‘interrupt’ certain plans you had for your family and friends in the event of your death – plans which must be stipulated within a will in order to avoid disputes.

 

3. You Have Made a Major Investment

For most people, the biggest investment they will ever make is their home. Buying property is a significant step, and a rite of passage that warrants plenty of thought for the future. 

If you are married, then the process will be significantly easier – if not, however, then making the proper adjustments to your will (or writing one from scratch) is essential. 

 

The estates of those who die without a will are treated according to the laws of intestacy, meaning your loved ones’ futures are no longer able to be treated with any concession to your personal wishes.

 

 Any significant investments, whether property or shares or even high-ticket collectibles, should prompt you to revisit your will.

 

4. You Are Starting a Business

Owning your own business means taking on a great many more responsibilities – and, of course, taking on more assets in the form, for instance, shares. 

 

While you will need to work on a separate continuity plan for the business’s ongoing operation in your absence, you will also need to ensure that any personal interests are accounted for within your will, to make certain that your family will inherit what is rightly theirs. 

 

Again, if you have yet to write a will at all, then starting a business should definitely be the wake up call you need.

 

5. You Have Assets or Interests Overseas

Any assets that are not located within the UK can complicate the process of sorting through inheritance if sufficient care is not given when you write your will. 

 

The main reason behind this is the fact that different countries have different laws surrounding inheritance, and having no will in place is as good as ‘leaving it up to chance’ in terms of an inheritance going where you would like it to go. 

 

Working with a solicitor experienced in managing overseas assets and interests is very important, and not as difficult to find as you might think. For instance, if your primary residence is in the South West of England, but you also own a holiday home in Spain, then you can still work with solicitors in Gloucestershire in order to ensure that your will remains waterproof on both sides of the Gulf of Biscay.