My partner will get everything won’t they?
The Law on Intestacy does not recognise common-law partners. If you are single and living with someone your partner will not automatically inherit anything unless you write a Will.
What happens if I am married, without children?
And you die 'Will less' then your spouse may only get part of your estate. Without a Will, the law decides how your possessions should be divided and if there are close living relatives, even cousins, they may have a claim on your estate. This can result in a widow having to sell the family home because relatives are entitled to a share in the value.
My spouse will get everything won't they?
No. Not necessarily! Your spouse gets Personal Chattels plus £250,000 plus Absolute Life interest in half of residue (income only, no claim on capital). Children get half of residue plus remaining half of residue on death of spouse.
What happens if my spouse remarries?
His/her new spouse will inherit one half of everything he/she inherited from you. Furthermore, on his/her death, he/she may exclude your children by merely writing a Will to that effect.
What happens if I have no children?
The Law on Intestacy again determines what happens. Other family members can inherit. If there are none then the Government gets the lot.
Why is it necessary for guardians to be appointed for my under age children?
It is not enough to assume that family members will take on this task if anything should happen to both parents and the children are under the age of 18. You might have decided on someone totally different. It is possible the family may argue. In any case the ultimate decision will be with the COURT. Whatever informal agreements you may have made will be given little, if any, consideration.
Is it necessary to make a Will if I am separated?
Yes. Separated couples without a Will are treated as if they are still married unless a legal separation has been agreed.
I've made a will but my spouse hasn't. Does this matter?
Definitely. The Law on Intestacy doesn't discriminate. It affects spouses equally. As Predicting who will die first is impossible it is essential that both spouses protect each other in case they are killed together in a common accident.
I've made a will and remarried is the original still valid?
No. It becomes null and void. Divorce on the other hand, does not automatically cancel your Will - though any gift to a divorced spouse automatically lapses, unless you confirm it in a new Will.
I’ve made a Home made Will is it valid?
Lack of clarity in the definitions of bequests or because the wording was imprecise the estate may not be easily administered which can cause a great deal of distress to relatives. The administration of a badly worded Will can take a lot longer and legal costs can be several times greater than they needed to be had the Wills been professionally prepared.