Of the 2000 or so people who die in the UK every day, approximately only one third had made a Will!
A will is a legally binding document which sets out to whom you wish to leave your property and possessions when you die. In addition, it is an opportunity for you to make specific provision for the needs of your spouse/partner/civil partner/children with the minimum of trouble and expense.
It is a common misconception that if you die without making a Will (Intestate) everything automatically passes to your surviving spouse, but that is not always the case. Under the Intestacy Rules it is the law, rather than you, which dictates who will inherit your property and possessions. This has far reaching effects in terms of how much your spouse and children etc will receive. Perhaps very significantly if you are not married, or registered under the Civil Partnerships Act your partner would NOT benefit at all under the Intestacy Rules as your property and possessions will automatically pass to your nearest blood relative. Failing this then the Government will get everything!
In addition, if you have young children, you will not have indicated who you wish to look after those children and bring them up. You could also end up paying unnecessary inheritance tax.
We all die one day and at a time when your family will have more than enough to cope with, at least it will be some comfort that your affairs have been legally taken care of. The key considerations are-
Although stationers sell do-it-yourself Will packs, we do not recommend using these as in doing so there are a number of potential pitfalls. We advise using an expert who will discuss all aspects of arranging your Will as well as focussing on other important issues that you may not have considered but that could have far reaching consequences if they were not included. Here the solicitor will ensure:- that there is no ambiguity; that the Will is correctly signed and witnessed; provide advice on other matters such as Inheritance Tax Planning etc. Periodic reviewing of your Will is also advised as your personal circumstances and wishes may change.
With ever increasing house values added to life insurance, death in service benefits, pensions etc, more and more people are now finding themselves to be above the tax threshold (currently fixed at £325,000) which means that their family would be liable to paying 40‰ tax on the value of the estate over that level.
Our experts will be able to help you on the most tax efficient way of avoiding or significantly reducing inheritance tax.
If through illness or an accident you are unable to manage your own affairs (paying bills, accessing your bank account and all the other things that you currently take for granted) then you will need to appoint someone to do this on your behalf. A Lasting Power of Attorney is a recently introduced document which the solicitor can prepare for you, which can ensure that your interests will be taken care of should you become incapable of dealing with these matters yourself.
Not as much as you may think. It all depends on your personal circumstances and the complexities of your needs, but a simple Will could cost as little as £175. Your solicitor will give you a complete breakdown of the likely costs at the beginning of your meeting
Remember this is one of the most important documents you will ever sign, so you need to get it right! Having a Will, planning for Inheritance Tax and Capital Gains Tax, and possibly LPA arrangements, will save so much worry and heartache in the future.
So for your peace of mind and your family's security please contact us on 01484 821300 or click here.
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We were very satisfied with the service. Kay was very helpful and clear, visiting the house and meeting the family. We are happy with the result and would not hesitate to use Eaton Smith again.
Charlene was very helpful and explained everything to us clearly.
Ms Vilia was extremely easy to talk to and explained everything in plain English.
We were fortunate to have someone of Ms Charlene Vilia's experience and demeanour to guide us through making our Wills and LPAs. Thank you.
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Totally satisfied with the service you provided I have no adverse comments whatsoever.
The service was friendly and very appropriate for the needs of a 96 year old client. Excellent.
Excellent service and customer care throughout. Anna was very responsive to my needs.
Lucy provided exactly what I wanted and the right level of support regarding probate/letters of administration and IHT. The whole issue was resolved in a timely manner. Thank you!
Having being a client for almost 40 years, I think this speaks for itself. A very professional service is provided at all times by all members of the organisation.
My solicitor showed great insight and understanding every step of the way when family issues were difficult following the death of my mother. Her kindness and professionalism was very much appreciated.
I have known various members of this firm for many years although I have not needed your services except on rare occasions. I have always found them friendly and helpful and would be happy to contact them should it be necessary.
All the staff I came into contact with were helpful and sensitive to my needs. Rachael was particularly supportive, explaining everything I needed to know and being there if I needed something clarifying or help with anything.
We use Eaton Smith because they are friendly, understanding, knowledgable and very efficient. First class solicitors!
Anna was very helpful and clear in explaining legal matter, friendly and polite.
All areas of the process were explained clearly and all matters were dealt with efficiently.