Make 2022 the Year You Make Your Will!
Have you made your Will yet? If not – why not? If the Covid19 pandemic has taught us anything at all, it’s that our very existence is a fragile one. So, this blog is an end-of-year exhortation to you to make 2022 the year you make your Will. Add it to your list of NY resolutions now. Actually no – don’t add it – put it to the top of the list to deal with the moment you’ve finished sweeping up the Nordman needles and putting the decorations back in the loft!
It’s not a cheery Christmas topic – I get it. But there’s no point pretending that the worst can’t and won’t happen. It can and it does. And in particular when a pandemic continues to wreak havoc and interfere with lives and plans.
Why 2022 should be the year you make your Will
There are a whole heap of reasons of course – and more of that in a short while – but an overriding one we can sum up in one word: control. For the most part we can’t control either how, where or when we die. But what we CAN control, with the help of a well-written Will, is the division of our estate and the allocation of our goods and chattels. So, if you’re adamant that your youngest brother shouldn’t get the antique blanket chest that came from your grandmother, then a Will is how you do that.
Eight ways that having an up-to-date Will puts you in control
- A current Will is simply THE best way to provide for your loved ones in the event of illness or an unfortunate event befalling you. Whether it be the Omicron variant or falling off a ladder.
- Possessing a valid Will makes sure that all those who need to know are clear on what your wishes are should there be an unfortunate event.
- Child protection: an up-to-date Will protects your children. This one is of particular note if you live in a blended household – married or co-habiting. How does each of you control the division of the estate to make sure your respective children get a fair share? Make no mistake – this is a thorny issue. But one thing is crystal clear – it’s not an option to do nothing.If you went in to a blended family set-up with a Will drawn up then speak to a Will writer or solicitor the first chance you get. They can tell you how you can use trusts to safeguard against someone disinheriting your children. That’s something you’
- Appoint legal guardians for your children. I shouldn’t need to explain the importance of this one. If your children are underage then be sure that your existing Will (or new one if needed) appoints guardians who will love them and care for them.
I implore you to take control of this now. Do NOT leave it to chance and risk your children going into the care of someone that you’ve not chosen.
- You’re getting a divorce. The Covid pandemic revealed the fault line in many a marriage. Minor irritations became major annoyances and tipped many a marriage over the edge and into the divorce courts.
If this is you, before you do anything else – get your Will updated! ‘Why the urgency?’ I hear you cry. Well, because until you have your Decree Absolute in your hands, the eyes of the law will see as still wed to your soon-to-be-ex spouse. The upshot of that unfortunate point of law being that they could still inherit from you.
Ergo, what you might want to do is update your Will to name your children as beneficiaries rather than your estranged partner.
- Your current Will is eons old. If that’s the case, now is the time to take control and get it reviewed to check how relevant it still is – or isn’t.
For instance, are all the beneficiaries and executors alive still? Or even still in your life? If so, do you still want to name them in your Will? Are your children now grown up? If so could you now name them as executors? Have your financial or family circumstances changed? Does your Will contain complex trust arrangements that are no longer relevant?
- You’ve got married. If, as a single person, you had a Will, then marriage is an automatic revocation of that Will. The only caveat to that being if it has specific wording in it to state otherwise. If that’s not the case then you and your new spouse need a new Will.
- Taking control of your Will and getting it either updated or written aids restful sleep! It’s a no-brainer.
So, there you have it. Eight excellent reasons why you should take control and get an up-to-date Will. If you’d like to know more or would like a free Will review then please get in touch.