Making a will - all you need to know | Age UK
Baby products you need · Second hand baby kit · Shopping for a new baby . DIY - Writing your own will Getting a solicitor to write your will If you want to control what happens to your estate after you die, it's vital to have an up-to-date will in place. In addition to writing the will, a solicitor will usually store it for you for free. Products 1 - 60 of Looking for Legal Forms products? Last Will and Testament DIY Will Download eKit Valid in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. For more information visit Will Aid or Free Wills Month - Age UK takes Make your own will: You can make your own will but you must make.
In Northern Ireland, you may be able to get help with the legal costs of making a will under the green form scheme.
For more information about the green form scheme in Northern Ireland, see Help with legal costs. What should be included in a will To save time and reduce costs when going to a solicitor, you should give some thought to the major points which you want included in your will.
You should consider such things as: You should make a list of all the people to whom you wish to leave money or possessions. These people are known as beneficiaries. You also need to consider whether you wish to leave any money to charity who should look after any children under 18 who is going to sort out the estate and carry out your wishes as set out in the will. These people are known as the executors Who are executors Executors are the people who will be responsible for carrying out your wishes and for sorting out the estate.
They will have to collect together all the assets of the estate, deal with all the paperwork and pay all the debts, taxes, funeral and administration costs out of money in the estate.
They will need to pay out the gifts and transfer any property to beneficiaries. Who to choose as executors It is not necessary to appoint more than 1 executor although it is advisable to do so - for example, in case one of them dies.
It is common to appoint 2, but up to 4 executors can take on responsibility for administering the will after a death. The people most commonly appointed as executors are: You should always approach anyone you are thinking of appointing as an executor to see if they will agree to take on the responsibility.
If someone is appointed who is not willing to be an executor, they have a right to refuse. If an executor dies, any other surviving executor s can deal with the estate. If there are no surviving executors, legal advice should be sought. For more information about what executors have to do in England and Wales, see Dealing with the financial affairs of someone who has died. Requirements for a valid will In order for a will to be valid, it must be: This means the person must be fully aware of the nature of the document being written or signed and aware of the property and the identify of the people who may inherit and in writing and signed by the person making the will in the presence of two witnesses and signed by the two witnesses, in the presence of the person making the will, after it has been signed.
A witness or the married partner of a witness cannot benefit from a will. If a witness is a beneficiary or the married partner or civil partner of a beneficiarythe will is still valid but the beneficiary will not be able to inherit under the will. You will need to make a list of how to access all these accounts.
Making a will
You may need specialist legal help because there could be issues about your online account being American, for example, and not covered under Scottish executry law who you want to benefit from your will. You should make a list of all the people to whom you wish to leave money or possessions. These people are known as beneficiaries.
You also need to consider whether you wish to leave any money to charity who should look after any children under 16 and what provisions need to be made for them and any older children who is going to sort out the estate and carry out your wishes as set out in the will. These people are known as the executors see below if you want to leave property to a transgender person you must seek advice as you may have to refer to the person in their acquired gender, not their birth gender.
Extra care needs to be taken when you are making a will and including instructions about property such as your house or flat. In some cases there may be a clause in the title deeds called a 'survivorship destination' clause. These clauses can override what it says about the property in a will. A solicitor can give advice about the impact of these clauses. Who are executors Executors are the people who will be responsible for carrying out your wishes and for sorting out your estate property and possessions.
They will have to collect together all the assets of the estate and deal with all the paperwork. They may have to pay all the debts, taxes, funeral and administration costs out of money in the estate. They will need to pay out the financial assets and other possessions and transfer any property to beneficiaries. They may have to sort out the problems that exist because there isn't enough money in the estate to pay all the debts due but anyone in this situation should seek further help.
Who to choose as executors It is not necessary to appoint more than one executor although it is advisable to do so, for example, in case one of them dies. It is common to appoint at least two people as executors but up to four executors can take on responsibility for administering the will after a death.
This may be necessary if you have a lot of possessions and property and there is too much to do for one or even two executors. You can appoint a social media executor if you think the person you have asked to be the executor does not have sufficient new technology skills to know what to do with any digital assets. You can appoint an odd number of executors if you think there could be disagreements. This could mean that deadlock in any decision making is avoided.
People most commonly appointed as executors are: It is important to choose executors with considerable care as their job involves a great deal of work and responsibility. You should always approach someone first if you are thinking of appointing them as an executor in your will. If someone does not want to be named as an executor in your will they can refuse. If you do not appoint any executors in your will the court will have to do this after your death.
Once the court appoints an executor that person cannot resign or take on other executors without going back to the court for permission. If an executor dies, any other surviving executor s can deal with the estate. If there are no surviving executors, the court can appoint one. Requirements for a valid will In order for a will to be valid, it must be: This means the person must be fully aware of the nature of the document being written or signed and aware of the property and the identity of the people who may inherit; and made in writing; and signed by the person making the will on every page; and signed by the person in front of a witness.
As soon as the will is signed and witnessed, it is valid. Where to keep a will Once a will has been made the original document should be kept in a safe place and other documents should not be attached to it as this can make it more difficult to find.
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There are a number of places where you can keep a will: If you keep a copy at home it is a good idea to put it in an envelope that is clearly labelled. It is generally not a good idea to keep an original will at home as it can get damaged. Changes of circumstance When a will has been made, it is important to keep it up to date to take account of changes in circumstances.
It is advisable for you to reconsider the contents of a will regularly to make sure that it still reflects your wishes and what you own. The most common changes of circumstances which affect who you want to leave your property to are: How do I make sure my will is valid? For a will to be valid: The beginning of the will should state that it revokes all others. If you have an earlier will, you should destroy it.
Signing and witnessing the will You must sign your will in the presence of two independent witnesses, who must also sign it in your presence — so all three people should be in the room together when each one signs.
If the will is signed incorrectly, it is not valid. Beneficiaries of the will, their spouses or civil partners shouldn't act as witnesses, or they lose their right to the inheritance. Beneficiaries shouldn't even be present in the room when the will is signed.
Wills - Citizens Advice
Any will signed on your behalf must contain a clause saying you understood the contents of the will before it was signed.
If you have a serious illness or a diagnosis of dementia, you can still make a will, but you need to have the mental capacity to make sure it is valid. How do I update my will?