Every adult can and should make a Will. You must be at least 18 in England & Wales. You must also be of sound mind and must understand what you are giving away, how you are giving it away and who you are giving it to. If you have ever suffered from a mental disorder or if an illness may be affecting your judgement, always consult a doctor before making a Will.
What happens if I die without a Will?
If you die without a Will or your Will is invalid, you die Intestate. The management of your Estate which is usually your house and all your assets (minus your debts), is then carried out by administrators appointed by the courts. Generally, your Estate will go to your spouse, or if you do not have one, your children. If you do not have any children, then it would go to other blood relatives which can all be found on our Rules of Intestacy Brochure. If you do not have any blood relatives, then your Estate will pass to the Crown.
How long is a Will valid for?
A Will is valid until it is revoked. This can happen in several ways. Firstly, by destroying the Will with the intent of revoking it. The Will must be physically destroyed, as if only a proportion of the Will is destroyed, only that part of the Will is revoked. Secondly, a Will is revoked by making a new Will and in it, stating that you are revoking all previous Wills and Codicils. Lastly, your Will is revoked if you get married unless you made the Will with the forthcoming marriage in mind. If your Will does mention the forthcoming marriage, your Will must name the specific person you intend to marry, and it must state that you intend the Will to be valid during this marriage.
What should I include in my Will?
The Will should include who will inherit your property and assets, and anyone you wish to exclude from the Will. Most importantly, you must name someone to carry out your wishes and Guardians for any children if they do not have another parent. You can also use your Will to say whether you would like to be buried or cremated.
Where should I store my Will?
It is paramount that once the Will is signed, it is kept secured in a safe place. AdviserWill offer an optional storage facility in our waterproof and fire-rated safe. You are provided with certificates of storage so that your Executor(s) know where to find the Will when the time comes. It also ensures that the Will is released to the right person at the time of death.
How do I change a Will?
You cannot amend an existing Will. If you wish to make changes to your Will, you must make a new Will and either destroy your previous Will or state in your new Will that you revoke all previous Wills.