If you have money or property that you wish to leave your spouse, children, or friends after you die, a will should be written. Without a will, your wishes may not be met or known if you’ve never discussed them with anyone else. Here are five tips to use when writing a will to protect your estate.
Who Should Have a Will?
Anyone who owns property, has money in investments or savings, or has children should have a will. You don’t need to be wealthy to have a will: you just need to have possessions that you want to leave certain people or plans to designate a guardian to make legal decisions to care for minor children should you pass. While the spouse will usually get the estate and custody of minor children, if something should happen to you both or you’re divorced, then having a will can help make sure that your wishes are followed.
Carefully Choose Will Writer
While you can hire a solicitor to draw up your will, it doesn’t guarantee that the will is going to be done well. Although you can purchase a do-it-yourself will kit, it can be easy to make mistakes by doing it on your own. A professional will writer in Hampshire can help you draft a solid will which will ensure that your wishes are obeyed after your death.
You will need to select someone to be your primary executor and a substitute executor if something happens to the primary one. Often, a spouse will be chosen as the primary executor, but if he or she dies with you, then someone else will need to handle those duties. Talk to the people you trust in your life about assuming the duties of an executor, which requires a commitment to making sure that your wishes are fulfilled as you want.
Pick Guardians for Children
If you have minor children, then you will need to appoint a guardian if you are their sole parent or in case you and your spouse are killed at the same time. The guardian should be someone you’ve talked to about taking care of your children in case you do pass away. While most people pick grandparents, siblings, or other family members, friends can also be appointed as guardians if you want them to raise your minor children.
If you have possessions such as family heirlooms or a stamp collection that you want to leave to certain people, your will should contain legacies. There are several types of legacies, but when you want to leave a specific object to a friend or relative, then a “specific legacy” should be written leaving the object to the person whom you wish to give it to. The executor will make sure that your wishes are carried out and the object goes to the designated person.
The more assets that you have to be distributed after your death, the more complicated the drafting of your will could be. You need to hire a professional will writer or solicitor to ensure that your will is correctly drafted and then administered per your wishes.