Will Advisors & Will Writers in Bedford & St Neots
There are 3 types of will…
A Single Will
A Single Will is suitable for any one individual who wants to record their wishes upon their death. Single Wills don’t just have to be for single people or those who are divorced, you can be married or in a relationship and still write a Single Will if your partner has different wishes to yourself.
A Mirror Will
A Mirror Will is normally suitable for couples who have similar wishes. Two separate Wills are made, one for each person. The contents of the Wills ‘mirror’ each other in terms of where your assets might go and can allow for some different elements such as personal requests for funeral arrangements.
Specialist Trust Wills
A Trust within a Will creates a legal structure which can then be included as part of a Will to provide greater levels of asset protection. They can be used to protect your estate against future care fees, to ensure assets pass to your children if you start a new relationship.
These are just 3 examples of Specialist Trust Wills
1} Protective Property Trust Wills
Bob & Ann’s Family Home
Time after time Bob & Ann Kept putting it off leaving their children’s future in the hands of fate!
Bob & Ann both aged 76 owned a 3 bed semi worth £220,000 which they wanted to leave their children. Bob & Ann thought they had planned well but some years after Bob died his wife developed dementia and eventually Ann was moved into care, her house was sold, and the money used to fund the nursing costs. Ann lived in the nursing home for 3½ years in which time over £200,000 of her money was spent funding her care, when Ann died only £14,320 was left.
Stories like this are common, the sad thing is Bob and Ann knew about the benefits of Protective Property Trust Wills but time after time kept putting off upgrading their old Wills. It would have been so easy for Bob & Ann to upgrade their Wills.
Bob & Ann (like most married couples) had made only basic Wills so that when Bob died, Ann was left everything in Bob’s Will including the family home. Because Ann ended her life in care all the money had to be used to pay her care home fees.
With ‘Protective Property Trust’ Will’s Bob & Ann would have legally protected 50% of the value of their house.
Cost of a Protective Property Trust Will: £450 the pair
2} Discretionary Trust Wills
David’s Spendthrift Son
David is 60 years old and has only months to live, David is divorced and has 3 children and one son Mark who is hopeless with money.
David is a successful business person and has acquired a substantial estate which he wants to use to help his son Mark, but he knows Mark will spend or waste his share of the money in a very short time. What can David do? David can set up a ‘Discretionary Trust Will’ The terms of the Trust create a Discretionary Trust so during the lifetime of Mark the trustees of David’s Will can control the funds ‘at their discretion’ which are given to Mark.
The Trust may be for a specific sum or the whole or part of the estate. After Mark’s death, any remaining funds can be passed to David’s other beneficiaries or charity’s. Control always remains with David’s trustees.
Cost of a Discretionary Trust Will: £250 each
3} The Right of Occupation Trust Will
It is now commonplace that a person may have had multiple marriages, children by different parents, or even choose to remain unmarried. In all these cases a Will is of paramount importance to direct where a deceased’s assets should be bequeathed. The Law of Intestacy seeks the last surviving blood relative and in absence of one passes the entirety of an estate to the Crown. Who would want this if they had a close friend, a cohabiting partner or a favourite charity?
One such area worthy of highlighting is the ability to give a loved one a right of occupation to remain in your property for their lifetime. To liken this to a real-life example, a testator may have had children by another during their lifetime and now having ended their relationship with the children’s parent has started a new relationship with another. In our experience, whilst a testator is always concerned with the needs of their new partner, ultimately their intentions are in most cases to provide for their offspring.
As a person’s most valuable asset is normally their home, this raises the question of what would happen to the property were the person to die. A right of occupation clause would be important in this case, as it would allow the testator to place their property in a life interest trust for the benefit of their children whilst allowing their current partner to remain in the property for their life. This would then serve to tick both boxes of the testator’s concerns:
(1) making sure offspring are provided for and
(2) making sure their new partner was not without a home.
The trust would be worded in such a way to protect the children, ending the arrangement if the deceased’s partner married or cohabited.
Cost of a Right of Occupation Trust Will: £250 each
Wills & Will Writing – Your Questions Answered
Q - Who gets what if I die with no will?
Q - What happens where there is no Will?
Q - Can an executor be a beneficiary in a Will?
Q - Can children under 18 inherit?
Q - I’m divorced but what will happen with my existing will?
Q - Can I make my own will?
Q - Do I need to nominate guardians in my will?
Q - Do married couples need two Wills?
Q - How do I sign my will?
- You must sign the Will first.
- The 2 witnesses must watch you sign
- The witnesses must then sign the Will and watch each other sign and witness the Will, then they must put their names, addresses and occupations.
- The testator (You) must watch the witnesses sign.
- Don’t forget to date the Will. Day / Month & Year
You should keep the Will in a safe place, you should let the executors or one of the major beneficiaries under your Will know where it is kept. You should never attach anything to your Will by way of a paper clip, pin or otherwise or in any way leave any mark on it. Such marks can cause great difficulty when it comes to prove your Will in the probate registry. Do not ever store a will in a safety deposit box because probate is needed to open the box & probate cannot be granted without the Will.
Q - How much does a simple will cost?
But how can I protect my assets and make sure my intended beneficiaries end up with what I want?
Watch our video to learn how
We can help you to decide which type of Will is most suitable
Your consultation is arranged at your convenience in your home within the Bedford and St Neots area, and further afield in the UK we can arrange an initial consultation for you by telephone.