Married Couples & Civil Partners
When you get married for the first time, the last thing on your mind is what happens if you die. You are busy building your lives for the future, talking about having children, getting a bigger house, changing jobs and earning more money. You are no longer an individual who has the freedom to do what you like, when you like! You are now a responsible adult and need to behave like a grown up!! But, with all of these changes comes an added sense of responsibility and maturity.
If you have been sensible as a single person and made a will your marriage has now revoked the will you previously made!
Wills for married couples or those in a civil partnership are documents which secure the future of your spouse and your immediate family. A will should not just be looked at as a document that no-one wants to complete but as part of sensible planning for your future, just like life insurance or car insurance. By preparing a will you are insuring yourself for the "what if" and, as we all know, that "what if" is never planned.
As a married couple you have a choice about whether you write wills which are identical or similar will. Identical wills are also known as a mirror wills. This is just what it says on the tin, wills that mirrors each other.
So, shall we start to look at the things you need to think about when writing a will?
Executors: you need to think about the people you trust enough to manage the responsibility of your estate following your death. Are they over eighteen? Can they deal with money management? Will they disagree with your other executors? Could there be a conflict of interest? An executor has to identify the assets and liabilities in the estate, calculate the total estate and work out whether it is subject to Inheritance Tax. They need to complete Inheritance Tax paperwork and swear statements for the Probate Registry. Once all this has been done they then need to collect the assets, pay the bills and distribute the estate.
Funeral wishes: a will is an ideal place to record your funeral wishes. You can go as far as you like with instructions or you can keep it brief. You would be surprised at some of the things that people want to do! You need to let your executors know if you have a funeral plan.
Guardians: this is probably more important for people with children under the age of eighteen. Your guardians will be the individuals you want your children to live with in the event that both of their parents have died.
Gifts: Do you want to make any monetary gifts or gifts of specific items. These are often made to charities, close family and important friends.
Residue: This is what is left once everything has been paid and any gifts have been made. This is the pot you get to divide between those who are important. How old do you want your beneficiaries to be before they receive money? Remember, when planning what you want to do have you thought about the consequences of what would happen if your first choice of beneficiaries died before you? Would you want their children to inherit from your estate or would you want someone else to benefit?
When you look at writing a will your wishes are of the utmost importance. However, you do also need to consider the impact of Inheritance Tax and care fees on your
Our standard wills for a couple start from £400 plus VAT. For more details on our prices for all our will services click here