Bringing up the topic of will writing to a loved one can be an uncomfortable and sensitive topic. As your parents, grandparents or partners age, the likelihood of sudden death increases. When you’re young the thought of writing a will couldn’t be put further back in your mind. The realisation that that time is over, and you are indeed getting older is a humbling one.

Moreover, it is often the person who is likely to benefit from a will that is the one pushing for its formation. So, there is also an aspect of self-interest with this conversation, whether that’s the intention or not. Despite this, it’s a conversation which is still important and one which could heavily impact yours and many other people’s futures.

Distributing your estate, the way you want

Writing a will ensures that your estate is distributed according to your wishes. This could be relatively simple, like leaving the whole estate to a brother or friend, or it could be leaving individual items to an array of people. It’s your estate, distribute it how you please. Without a will, your estate will be allocated to your nearest next of kin. You may also wish to exclude and include people to inherit from your estate. Stepchildren can be just as important as blood children. However, unless adopted, stepchildren will not inherit if there are higher entitled blood relatives.

Avoiding family disputes

You may think “what’s the point writing a Will? My kids will inherit everything”. Although that may be true, there is a little more to it. Money isn’t the issue in this instance, any funds will be divided equally among the beneficiaries. However, personal, and sentimental items are where family arguments can arise. Three daughters may all want their mothers prized piece of jewellery. A Will allows you to detail which beneficiary inherits what items. You can assure your children all get something of equal value and avoid any potential arguments, which could arise over such items.

Making the process easy for your loved ones

Writing a will reduces the chance of problems arising after your death. A will makes everything clear and far easier. Disputes arise more often when a Will hasn’t been written. Certain people are entitled to apply to courts to challenge the intestacy rules if they deem it unfair. Moreover, estates without a will can be more complex. Beneficiaries will need to prove their entitlement to the courts, presenting birth certificates. Many people may not have the certificates needed to prove their entitlement, needing to reorder them. You may have a partner who you have been with for many years but never married, because there is no legal connection, they would not be your next of kin. Instead, it could be a distant family member inheriting everything, leaving your partner financially unstable and with nothing of yours. Overall, it just makes the entire probate process far more difficult and long winded on your family.

Pets

Like most, Blanchards are avid animal lovers and understand the welfare of pets is a priority for many people. Passing away intestate can mean several outcomes for your pets. In an ideal situation a close friend, neighbour or family member will take on the responsibility of your animal. However, you never truly know how they will settle in their new home and if it’s a good fit. There is also the consideration that pets can be sent to an animal shelter. A Will allows you to arrange and elect a suitable party to care for and adopt your pet after you pass. With their consent obviously. As a result, your animal receives the best care and isn’t passed from home to home.

In conclusion, forming a Will is highly recommended, for protection of your assets and your families wellbeing. We see problems arise daily due to people dying intestate. It’s no question that the pros of writing a Will far outweigh the cons.

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