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This article was published on September 10th, 2020
A will is one of the most important documents you will ever create, however over time your circumstances can change and therefore it is essential that you review your will.
Our private client team have assisted many clients to help them update their will following a change in circumstances and in this blog post the team outline 8 common reasons why you should review your will to ensure your wishes are respected after you are gone.
Moving house can be extremely stressful, with a multitude of things to remember, however one thing you must not forget following your move is to contact your solicitor to update your will.
You may only need to change your address, however, in many instances, the value of the property will affect the value of your estate which can affect any gifts you included to individuals or organisations in your initial will.
Likewise, the type of ownership of the property you are moving into may be different to that listed for the original property and so this will also need to be updated accordingly.
You will also need to update your will if you are purchasing your first property or a property abroad, as all property will be taken into account when establishing the value of your estate (unless you have instructed your solicitor to create a trust or put similar measures in place).
When you created your initial will you may not have felt you wanted or needed to protect certain assets.
However, as time goes on, considering the potential cost of care is something that many of us will do as we get older.
As a result, you may wish to add trusts to your Will to efficiently preserve your assets whether that be to help with the cost of care, should you need it, or to help benefit your family.
As well as assisting with the cost of care, setting up a trust in your will can also include the following benefits:
Relationships can be complex and this complexity can often carry over into your will if you fail to keep it up to date.
You may have married, divorced, separated or now living with a partner, many of these life events will have a direct effect on your existing will.
For example, if you get married, this will overrule any existing will that you have, instead, intestacy rules will apply.
If you don’t want intestacy rules to apply to your estate and want specific people or organisations to inherit specific parts of your estate, it’s essential you review your will and create a new one once you’re married.
However, should you get a divorce, your ex-spouse will be deprived of benefitting from your estate, however, all other measures will remain intact, if you want this to change you will need to update your will.
Likewise, if you have children or there is a death in the family that may affect the distribution of your assets, you will need to review your will and update it to reflect the changes that need to be made.
Non-married couples may also need to review their will to ensure that
When you create your will, you assign an executor or executors to execute your wishes when you have passed away.
It is their responsibility to ensure that your estate is distributed as you outlined in your will.
Executors are usually people that you are close to, either a family member or close friend, however, your solicitor may also be appointed as an executor.
But what happens if your executor passes away before you or your relationship breaks down with them and a new executor needs to be appointed?
This is an aspect of a will that can often be overlooked, however, it is essential that you review your will and update it with new executors as soon as possible.
The final reason on our list of reasons to review your will, is taking changing financial circumstances into account.
Personal or business changes may affect the value of your assets and so updating your will can ensure this is taken into account when your estate is being valued.
Likewise, you may benefit from the new Residence Nil Rate Band of Inheritance Tax that was introduced in April 2017.
We’ve discussed at length here just some of the main reasons why you may need to review your will, but what does that actually entail?
Our Private Client team are experts in will drafting and will be with you every step of the way during the will drafting and will review process.
Whether you have created your initial will with our team or you need our assistance to update your will following a change in circumstances, whether they be one of the circumstances outlined above or otherwise, we provide each of our clients with expert guidance to ensure their will is legally binding and that our clients’ wishes are respected when they are gone.
If you would like to review your will or you have yet to create one and wish to do so, please call us for free on 0800 1979 345 or click here to complete our enquiry form and we will arrange to contact you at a time that is more suitable for you.
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