A profound statement made recently by John, a new client of mine.
Now don’t get me wrong, some people don’t need a Will – and I’m not the person to arrange things for my clients if they don’t need to – but in most cases, a Will prevents an unnecessary headache for those that you leave behind.
So why did John not think he needed a Will?
- Maybe he is not bothered who gets his house or his assets when he dies.
- Maybe he is quite happy that if both he and his wife die together that their kids will go into care whilst the family apply to the court for residence.
- Maybe he has no immediate family and is happy that everything he owns will go to the treasury
John wrongly believed that if he died his wife would get everything, which means he could save the cost and inconvenience of writing a Will – after all, who wants to go to a Solicitor to be told off for not having one, having dressed up nicely and been on their best behaviour in a way reminiscent of a visit to the Headmaster’s office? And then get the pleasure of being charged a fortune for doing so!
John’s beliefs are not unusual in the scheme of things, over the years I have met so many people that have put making a Will on their ‘to do’ list and not quite got to it yet. This is why I added Will writing to my business about 6 years ago, and have removed many of the barriers that prevent people from getting this important piece of paper that provides security and peace of mind.
My role when I chat with people about purchasing their home or selecting protection for their family is to discuss the ‘What ifs’ and ensure that they understand what they need to do and why, even if the conversation becomes a little uncomfortable. It is important to understand the rules of Intestacy and use Wills and Trusts to ensure that your wealth passes to the people that you choose in the most tax-efficient manner.
A man local to me died in an accident a couple of years back without making a Will, and his (2nd )wife had to sell the family home, that her and his youngest 3 children had lived in for years, to pay the inheritance due to the older 3 children from a previous marriage. I’m sure this was not what he had wanted, but with no Will – there was no other choice.
Financial freedom is all about choices, make yours wisely. Protect the ones you love.