family law dundee write a will

Making a Will Lawyer Dundee

will solicitor dundeeA will sets out what you want to happen to your property and possessions after your death. It is not a legal requirement to make a will, but it is highly recommended that you have one. If you do not make a will before you die, you are known as dying intestate. This means that your estate will be divided according to succession law. These rules are put in place by the government and would not reflect your wishes.

Therefore, if you want to ensure that your estate is passed on to the family, friends or charities that you wish, you should write a will.

Why write a will?

There are many reasons to ensure that you have written a will, including:

  • Writing a will ensures that the control remains with you. As mentioned earlier, a will allows you to make it very clear what you want to be done with your property. If you don't make a will, there is no legal evidence to show how you wish your property to be divided up amongst your surviving family when you die. This means that whatever your wishes would otherwise have been, your estate will be distributed according to a set of rules that will not take into account what your wishes would have been. This means that your family may be prevented from enjoying an inheritance that they would otherwise have been granted, if you had made such wishes clear in writing.
  • Writing a will allows you to chose someone you trust to execute the wishes set out in your will. Not only does your will allow you to detail how your property is to be distributed, it also allows you to identify someone that you trust to perform this task. This person is called your executor and they will be given the responsibility of following the terms of your will. This situation is very different where there is no will, when the courts will appoint someone of their own choosing to distribute your estate. With your appointing an executor, you can take the time to discuss with this person why you have chosen to distribute your property in a certain way. The executor can then communicate this information to your family after you pass away, answering any questions that they may have. It also allows you to have confidence that your personal affairs will be administered by someone that you are familiar with: the role of executor is a very important one, and should be given to someone that you believe will be able to discharge their duties effectively and efficiently.
  • There are also tax advantages to making a Will. If you plan early enough, your solicitor may be able to help you find considerable tax savings and plan for this in your will.

Inheritance tax and trust law advice from Family Law Dundee

If you are planning on leaving any of your assets to your family, you should be aware that inheritance tax will have to be paid. Although you will not need to worry about this, your surviving family will be called upon to satisfy the tax that is due from your estate, which is based on its value at the time of your death. Undoubtedly, you will want to spare your family any financial hardship, and creating a will can help with this. You can reduce your estate’s tax liability by:

  • Creating a trust for family members to benefit from in the future. You may have children or grandchildren that you would like to benefit from your estate in a certain way, e.g. money to be used for higher education. By creating a trust in your will you can specify how your family is to benefit from the assets placed in the trust. Furthermore, doing so also removes the assets from your estate, thereby reducing the inheritance tax liability. This is because when the property is placed into a trust, it is no longer deemed be your property.
  • Giving to a worthy cause. You may be anxious that some of the value of your estate is given to a cause that has been very important to you through your life. You can make a provision in your Will to ensure that a proportion of your estate – however much you decide – is given to the charitable organisation of your choice. This allows you to leave some portion of money to a cause that you believe is deserving of such generosity, and also further reduce the tax liability of your estate: charitable donations are not subject to inheritance tax.

If this applies to you, get in touch using the form below and we will help you through the process by putting you in touch with a suitable solicitor near you.

Intestacy law advice

Alternatively, you might be at the stage where a relative has died intestate (without a will) and you need legal advice to answer questions such as:

  • What do I do next?
  • Am I entitled to an inheritance?
  • How much tax is due?

Contact Family Law Dundee to make a will

Although they may have died without a will, you could be entitled to a share of their assets. This area of law can be very complicated, so get in touch and we will point you in the right direction.

Call us on 01382 250 361 or contact us online.

Enquire now

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