Making a Will would enable you to decide who should receive your Estate on death and avoid possible legal problems for your family in the future. You would also be able to consider Inheritance Tax (IHT) planning making sure that you take advantage of the maximum reliefs and exemptions applicable to your Estate – especially the latest provision for Residence Nil Rate Band (RNRB) which came into force in April this year. This benefit of £100,000 is in addition to the usual Nil Rate Band (NRB) which is currently £325,000.00 per person.
The availability of the RNRB benefit will depend on a number of factors and we at Grower Freeman offer professional advice and guidance about how to work out the RNRB in some situations and what action you need to take to make sure your Estate qualifies for the RNRB.
Apart from tax planning, the preparation of a Will would enable you to consider your family’s circumstances carefully and provide for them accordingly. Here are some provisions which might be applicable:
- Appointment of Executors and Trustees. You would have the opportunity of choosing the right persons to act as the Executors to administer your Estate and also as Trustees in the event of a Trust arising from your Will in favour of members of your family.
- Appointment of Guardians. If you have children under the age of 18 you would be able to select the right persons to act as Guardians for such young children. Without a Will the law decides who should bring them up.
- Assets overseas. You would be able to consider how these should be dealt with on your death taking into account the provisions of the law in connection with such assets.
- Provisions for children from a previous. relationship and your current spouse/partner Making of a Will would enable you to consider carefully and make appropriate provisions for long term security of your spouse/partner and the inheritance of your children from a previous relationship. Please remember that if you do not have a Will the intestacy of rules do not include unmarried partners in the class of beneficiaries of your Estate. The entitlement of a spouse might also be inadequate. Therefore making a Will would enable you to make appropriate provisions for such individuals.
- Exclusion of particular individuals from your Estate. You might wish to exclude certain members of the family from benefitting from your Estate and the Will would enable you to do this with careful planning.
- Compensate for any lifetime Gifts you may have made to certain members of the family. Your Will might provide clarification in connection with gifts you may have made in your lifetime and therefore allow you to achieve equality between the branches of your family.
- Provisions for pets. You might wish to make appropriate provisions for any pets that may survive you.
- Running a business. You can make provisions for the future running of your business especially if you are a Partner in a business Partnership or a member of a limited company.
- Making provisions for vulnerable beneficiaries If you have any members of the family (a) with disability who are entitled to state benefits or (b) who could possibly become bankrupt or (c) who could go through a divorce, then your Will could make appropriate provisions to shelter the inheritance of such individuals.
These are only a few of the many issues which could be addressed in your Will and in doing so you would be able to give careful consideration to all relevant circumstances of your family and friends and provide for them and also for charities of your choice accordingly.