Many of the people we meet often believe that their estate will automatically pass to their spouse or other family members and as a result put off making a Will. Whilst the law provides a degree of protection for your surviving spouse and children, it does not necessarily mean they will inherit your estate in the way in which you had intended.
Why make a Will?
Minor Children: We often discuss with family and friends what our wishes are in respect of our children, should the worse happen to us. Whilst it is important to have these types of discussions it is also important to remember that this alone will not ensure that your children will be raised by those that you trust. If you do not have a Will or your Will does not appoint a legal guardian, then the decision of whom your children live with will be decided by the courts. This can place a great deal of stress on loved ones when they are already in a state of turmoil.
Unmarried Couples: The law does not make provision for unmarried couples and if you die without making a Will your partner will not inherit your assets.
Diverse Family Structure: It is so often the case that children can be unintentionally bypassed without having the right type of estate planning in place, this is most common where step-families are brought together by second marriages.
Divorce: People often presume that if they divorce, then any planning they had in place would automatically cease. This is a common misconception and can often result in your loved ones being bypassed.
Making a Will means that your assets pass to your chosen beneficiaries and importantly in the order that you wish for them to benefit. Without a Will you risk leaving your loved ones with the burden of unravelling your affairs at an already stressful and emotional time or in some cases the State will decide who your beneficiaries will be.