It’s a hard truth but death won’t wait for you to have your affairs in order. Death also doesn’t care if you’re 21 or 98 which means you should be prepared by creating a Will. Anything can happen.
Many young adults avoid writing a Will because they think they are not old or wealthy enough to need one. However, life can be unexpected so it’s crucial to have one regardless of age or finances.
A Will is a formal document that designates care for dependents, leaves instructions for what you want to happen to your belongings, property and finances and protects loved ones from legal hassles or uncertainty when dealing with your estate after your gone.
Owning one is an important milestone in becoming a responsible adult because it allows you to control what happens to your property, whether a house, a savings account, or even a CD collection. Having a Will doesn’t declare to the world that you’re rich but that you care for those you leave behind. It also demonstrates that you are being responsible by organising your affairs.
Having a Will in place is the best use of both your time and money, and are not as expensive as you may believe.
Why is having a Will is important?
Life events happen unexpectedly and so does death. Don’t put off protecting your family’s future because you would rather spend the money on something frivolous now which will not help your family in the event of your death.
If you die without a Will, the decision of what happens to your property and finances, no matter how meager, is decided by probate laws, and the final outcome may not be what you intended. This could result in your family not receiving what you want them too. This is especially important if you’re not married and in a serious relationship, and/or have children.
Not owning a Will almost always costs your friends and family considerable time and money. Your estate may be distributed according to the laws of Intestacy if you don’t own one.
If you are young, you know that you’ll be going through a number of life changing events. You are likely to form new relationships, buy a house, accumulate assets, maybe even have children. At each of these life events, you should at first create and then review and update your Will.
If you have a family, are unmarried and sadly pass away, your loved ones may not be protected, depending on how you have managed your assets and estate.
If you are the sole name on a mortgage of a house, your partner may not be entitled to the house and may have to leave. If you do not have a joint bank account, your finances may not be left to your partner. And, without legal documentation and proof of ownership, your partner may not be entitled to your possessions. Creating a Will allows you to decide where your possessions, finances and estate goes and helps protect your family.
How to make a Will
A common misconception with Wills is that they are probably expensive, and that they are a hassle to create. However, working with a Wills specialist at a solicitors, this is not the case. At Howells they start from £150.00 + VAT for a basic single Will.
It is also important to instruct a solicitors rather than draft it yourself, as poorly written Wills can come with hidden costs and stress at a later stage. See more on this in our ‘Why you need a Will’ article.
The first steps in writing a Will is to make a detailed list of all your possessions, which could include bank accounts, electronics, or a car.
Next, if you have children or pets, think about who you would like to take care of them and name those people as guardians. You also must decide who will be executor of your estate. This is the person who will protect your property and ensure that all matters are handled as instructed by you.
Once you have an idea of the matters you would like to see in your Will, you should have a qualified specialist prepare it for you. This is where Howells can help.
After your Will is completed, it is necessary to update it when changes in your life occur, such as inheriting property, getting married (or divorced), or having a new baby.
Writing a Will may seem to be an unnecessary task given your age or lack of significant assets, but it should not be ignored. Having a valid Will in place provides you with peace of mind, knowing that if the unthinkable happens, you have taken care of the people and things that are most important to you.
You can email Howells to make an appointment with our Wills, Trusts & Probate team at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us:
Sheffield: 0114 249 66 66
Barnsley: 0122 680 51 90
Rotherham: 0170 936 40 00
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