Understanding the Laws Surrounding Wills

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The best thing you can do for your loved ones is to create a last will and testament. This is the only way to ensure that the people who matter most to you get what you want to give them. If you do not, then your estate and belongings will be divvied up according to the court. If you wanted to give one child your home, this wish could be ignored unless you have a will explicitly stating so.

It is ideal for those who have children to have a last will and testament drawn up immediately to reduce the amount of will disputes and to ensure your wishes are kept. Though you can do this on your own, to ensure its legality you will want to hire a solicitor to have this done for you. You can then pay for a service so that they keep your will in a safe location until the time comes.

 

What is the Last Will and Testament?

The last will and testament is a legally binding document which explains how you wish your estate to be divided among your loved ones. Usually what is given out is only after all debts are settled, so it is wise to account for costs beforehand.

 

What Happens if There is No Will?

If there is no will then it is the government who decides on who gets what. For example, if the deceased’s assets total less than £250,000, then the entire amount will be given to the surviving spouse or civil partner. If it is more than £250,000, then the spouse or civil partner will receive money, and the surviving children will receive a share of the estate. Siblings can get a share of the estate of the deceased had no one else in the immediate family

 

What Happens if There Are Multiple Wills?

There are multiple wills only because the deceased created updated versions. Unless there is a reason to doubt the testamentary capacity at the time of the final will, the last version is the one that will be used.

 

What Does a Will Need to be Binding?

A will needs a few things to be legally binding. Creating a will on your own does not automatically make it legally binding, which is why all wills need:

  1. Testamentary Capacity
  2. Proof the will was made without duress or mistake
  3. Must be done through a proper ceremony

Testamentary Capacity refers to the frame of mind that the deceased was in at the time of making the will. They must know that they are updating their will, know the full extent of their estate, understand what they want, and not be coerced into updating their will in any way.

 

How to Contest a Will

Contesting a will is possible if you are a spouse, child, or live with the deceased. Challenging a will is also possible if you have been named in the will. If the deceased was not in the right frame of mind or not well enough to contest a will, a previous edition might be used. There might have been issues with the execution as well, or you might have proof that the will was created fraudulently or under coercion.

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