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It’s never too early to make a Will, but it could be too late.

It’s never too early to make a Will or put Lasting Powers of Attorney in place, but it could be too late!

For most of us, one of the most important things we will ever do is to ensure that our loved ones are taken care of once we have gone. We also want peace of mind that our beneficiaries receive the maximum benefit from their inheritance that we worked so hard for during our lifetime.

It’s also important to have Lasting Powers of Attorney in place to enable someone to look after your finances and health during your lifetime should you lose the ability to do this yourself.  None of us knows what’s around the corner and people have accidents and illnesses at all ages, not just when elderly.

I understand that making a Will and Putting Lasting Powers of Attorney in place might not be top of your priority list, but it’s easy to do and you’ll have peace of mind that your loved ones will be taken care of and your assets distributed according to your wishes.

As a business owner, it’s important to consider what would happen to your business if you were unable to make decisions.

This may be if:

  • you are enjoying a trip abroad on holiday or for business
  • you have an accident
  • you suffered a medical condition that incapacitated you

In such circumstances, who will authorise the payment of bills, sign cheques or pay wages? Don’t assume that a family member or a business colleague will have the authority to make these decisions on your behalf.

To protect your interests, and those of your business, you should consider making a business LPA.

Wills

I understand that life gets hectic and that writing your Will may not be at the top of your priority list but it is important to do, and it’s easier than you think!

Do you want to have control over where your assets go or should you let the Crown decide?
I doubt that decisions made by the Crown will be in accordance with your wishes

Do you want the courts to decide what will happen to your children and the money to look after them?
By naming guardians you can decide who will look after them

Would you like to make gifts to relatives, friends or charities?
You can’t without a Will

Do you think your spouse will get everything?  
That’s not necessarily the case and if you’re unmarried they might not get anything!

Do you have children from a previous marriage?
A Will is important to ensure that they receive the proportion of your estate that you intend for them to have.

Have you re-married since you made your Will?
Your Will is now invalid, you need a new one!

How would your partner or family manage if you had an accident or took ill and couldn’t manage your own affairs?

Illness or accident can affect us at any age and it could just be temporary.  Don’t leave it to chance, appoint Attorneys now and save a lot of potential heartache and expense for your family.

Trusts

There are many benefits of using a Trust as part of your Legacy Planning that a simple Will alone wouldn’t provide. Ask yourself – What If…

  • You or your spouse remarries after becoming widowed? You can protect against your assets being shared with a new partner and their family
  • A beneficiary divorced? You can protect against their inheritance being used as part of a divorce settlement
  • A beneficiary suffered financial hardship? You can protect against inheritance being seized by creditors.
  • A beneficiary dies prematurely? You can protect against your children’s inheritance going to a new family if your child dies and their spouse remarries.
  • A beneficiary is, or becomes reliant on state benefits? You can protect against inheritance being used as part of an assessment for means testing.
  • A beneficiary isn’t ready to receive their inheritance? If a beneficiary is young, a vulnerable adult or struggling with drug, alcohol or gambling addictions, for example, it might be preferable for their inheritance to be released in stages under the supervision of a trustee.
  • Someone wants to challenge your Will? Strictly speaking, anyone can challenge your inheritance wishes and lay claim to part, or all of your estate but not all will be taken seriously. A Trust is the most robust way to ensure that any challenge would be unsuccessful
  • You want your beneficiaries to have instant access to inheritance & mitigate cost?
    Probate is the legal process of transferring ownership from the deceased to the beneficiary via the Executor. It is a fairly bureaucratic process and usually takes several months to complete. Assets within the Trust will not be included within the probate process and therefore the beneficiaries will receive the benefit as you have stipulated immediately and without cost.

70% of the adult population haven’t made a simple Will and yet most know who they want to inherit.

I’ll be happy to spend an hour with you, with no obligation on your part. We can discuss what’s important to you and how you can protect it; we can also review any current provision you have in place to see if it still reflects your wishes.

I’ve seen the devastating consequences of not having planning in place and the problems it can cause within families, you owe it to your loved ones to protect them in the future.
Let’s have that chat over a cuppa and save your loved ones a great deal of heartache in the future.

Brenda

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Brenda Beveridge Legal Services