We’ve answered some of the most common questions people have about making and updating a Will. If you have a question we haven’t covered here, do not hesitate to get in touch with our Wills team – we’d be happy to help.
What happens if you die without leaving a Will?
If you die without leaving a Will, your estate will be divided according to the rules of intestacy. These rules set out exactly who can inherit depending on the size of your estate and what living relatives you have.
No regard will usually be given to what you may or may not have intended to happen to your estate e.g. a partner whom you were not married to or in a civil partnership with has no right to inherit under intestacy rules.
Who inherits when there is no Will?
This depends on the total value of the estate, as well as whether you were married/in a civil partnership, have any children and what other close relatives you have. The rules also vary to some degree whether you are living in England and Wales or elsewhere in the UK.
The rules favour surviving spouses and civil partners, then children, grandchildren and other direct descendants. If you do not have a surviving spouse/civil partner and children or other descendants, then other relatives, such as your siblings, parents, aunt and uncles may be able to inherit.
How much does it cost to make a Will?
The cost of making a Will depends on the circumstances, including how complex your estate is and any specific issues you may need addressed. We are usually able to offer a fixed-fee Will writing service for straightforward Will.
Please get in touch to find out more about the cost of making a Will.
When should you update your Will?
Opinions vary on how often people should review and update their Wills. It will usually be a good idea to think about this when you or your loved ones go through a major life event that could impact who you wish to provide for or who might stand to benefit from any bequests you have included in your current Will.
Common times to review and update a Will include:
- When getting married or entering a civil partnership
- When getting divorced
- When moving in with a partner you are not married to
- When buying property or other assets with an unmarried partner
- If you have children
- If your children get married or have children of their own
- If you inherit or otherwise acquire significant new assets
- If your family relationships or other priorities have changed