Category : Death

What Needs To Be Included In A Will

Most people don’t like to think about what happens if they die, however as an adult making a will is really important.

There are several ways you can make a will, with or without a solicitors input, but regardless of where and when you make your will, it is vital that you understand what needs to be included.

Your Assets

For most people property is their biggest asset.

Under the terms of current UK law, if a property is joint owned by your partner or spouse, your half of the equity passes to them, and they become sole owner.

The amount of your capital would depend on market values at the time.

However, if you do not intend, for whatever reason, to have your spouse or partner inherit your share, you should look into a tenancy in common as an alternative.

You can then leave your half to someone else.

This is more common with stepfamilies – although you may fall foul of inheritance tax if you leave your share to your children, etc.

It is worth asking for advice on this one and knowing the ways that inheritance tax can be avoided.

Your Children

If you have children under the age of 18, it is essential that your will stipulates arrangements for them.

You should make guardian provision if you are the only parent or in the event that both parents die.

If you are no longer married to or living with the second parent, but they still have parental responsibility the children are moved to their care.

If this is an issue, you should again take advice, but under the law domestic disputes are not considered good reasons for the other parent to not have custody.

Your Bequeaths

If you want to leave someone a gift you can specify this in your will.

Whether this is a sentimental item or cash, you should still clarify your intention.

Bequeaths can be made to anyone regardless of status; some people leave things to charities for example.

If you are the sole owner of a property and there is no legal inheritance right in place, you can leave that to whomever you wish, but it helps to say.

The residue is the amount left from your estate after everything has been dealt with, and all fees and taxes are paid.

The gain can be left to one or multiple recipients, but you should explain your intention.

Many people do not know the actual amount of residue as the calculations are complicated, so you would just state who should receive it.

Your Executors

A will needs to have executors.

This can be one person, but it makes sense to have more than one in case they do not survive you etc.

A friend or relative can do this, as can a solicitor.

For most people friends and relatives suffice, and the standard practice is that they seek advice from probate services if they are unsure how to carry out the requests you have made.

It is worth noting that an executor can also be a named beneficiary.

What Is Dying Matters Awareness Week 2018?

Every year in May, Dying Matters Awareness Week runs from 14th-20th giving a unique opportunity to make an often sad and uncomfortable subject an open forum for people of all ages to join and input to.

The aim is to provide a more open and free flowing approach to something many may know little to nothing about dealing with.

Public and private sector organisations like the National Health Service, charities, and bereavement services get involved to encourage the development of an increasingly more talked about taboo area of the realities of death and dying.

In 2017 through the group more than 600 events were held around the United Kingdom to garner more attention to the benefits of discussing death, the stigma of dealing with grief, how to access resources to help with death or bereavement and bring together people looking for more support in their communities.

Year on year the awareness week has seen more and more people want to find out more about they can help.

Building in strength and popularity, Dying Matters Awareness Week 2018 is set to be the most successful and well supported yet.

The website has a whole host of ideas, advice and tips to holding your own event – whether you are working for an organisation or simply want to run an event to reach out to your family, friends or local community.

The week long event will also see Dying Matters reaching out to the general public to address their perception of how they would want the end of their lives to be dealt with along with their loved ones.

The charity suggest that five steps are key to making the subject more approachable for all from writing a will, planning your funeral wishes, letting your loved ones know your preferences for end of life care.

Another important consideration is the option of organ donation.

The choice to gift your internal organs to someone who may be in need of them is vital to share with your family before death as legal implications have to be addressed if you haven’t made that clear.

The discussion of death can seem daunting, everyone deals with the inevitability differently, but it’s widely recognised now that an open and honest approach can help the grieving process and prepare you and your family for the subsequent difficulties in losing someone close.

For more information on the above go to