A Will is a legal document that ensures that your wishes are carried out when you pass away, particularly in terms of how you wish to distribute your assets and possessions. Without a Will, your relatives may disagree about what to do with your estate or, if you don’t have relatives, the government may decide.
If you don’t have a Will already, it is important that you engage a Solicitor to write one for you. Getting professional advice is the best way to make sure the correct wording is used to avoid potential mistakes and misunderstandings regarding your wishes about your estate.
If you already have a Will you can change it at any time. It is advised that you revise your Will every five years and whenever there is a major change within your extended family. Your wishes or circumstances may change over the years, so it is important to make sure your Will reflects these.
Keep in mind
Here is a list of the simple things to remember when making a Will:
- Make sure a family member knows where to find your Will. Ideally the original should be with your Lawyer and a copy kept with your other important documents at home.
- A Will needs to be signed or witnessed properly; each state has rules on this. Usually it requires two independent adults who are not potential beneficiaries.
- Consider the small sentimental items or those with no commercial value such as photos. It is often these items which family members squabble over due to the fact the Will does not include instructions as to what should be left to beneficiaries.