New Year - A Resolution You Really Should Try To Keep
Many of us each January resolve to change our lifestyles, lose weight after festive indulgences and put our affairs in order.
Writing a new Will or updating an existing Will should be a high priority for us all and a resolution which we should really try to stick to so as to avoid potential problems for the future.
However much, whether in a new year or not, we wish to ignore it, we all know that we are going to die one day and most of us know we should write a Will.
Without doubt the Principal reason for clients making Wills is to allow them to control who will inherit specific assets at the end of the day. Without a Will (intestacy) Scots Law has various rules which otherwise dictate how an estate must be distributed and to whom. Many clients do not appreciate that if their estate is intestate the current rules might mean that the statutory amounts may not exhaust the whole estate or may mean that a spouse or civil partner will inherit everything leaving the children without anything at all.
A Will enables clients to appoint their choice of executor to administer an estate and, where there are young children, ensures that the appropriate guardians are appointed rather than what are obviously very personal appointments being determined by the Scottish Courts.
Wills are the perfect vehicles for tax planning, whether for minimising Inheritance Tax, setting up Trusts etc. and if a family business should be involved, a Will can provide an opportunity to ensure perhaps that the business will survive a death!
Not having a Will can also mean lengthy delays in winding up estates which could potentially leave surviving spouses or children in an otherwise avoidable position of being unnecessarily “hard up” for an extended period of time.
By sticking with this particular New Year resolution in 2017 to make a Will you will have peace of mind safe in the knowledge that when the time comes you will have done all you can to make life as simple and as straightforward as possible for those left behind.
At Mackinnons we encourage all our clients to regularly review their Wills every five years or so and “prompts” to encourage our clients to do so are sent out routinely. If you would like us to review your existing Will or would prefer to write a new Will, please just give us a call.
Arranging for a new Will to be put in place which clearly reflects your wishes in advance of death is really something you can do in 2017 for the people you care about most.