16 June 2017
If you have taken the all-important step to book a will consultation with your solicitor, there are a few things you need to think about to get the most out of your meeting.
Most clients will have at the forefront of their mind an idea of who they want to benefit from their will. However, it is often the case that clients do not consider who should benefit if their main beneficiaries predecease them. We recommend that you dedicate some time before your will meeting to consider this issue as giving some thought to this can help your solicitor prepare a will which will cover as many eventualities as possible.
We recommend that you make a decision about who you want to be the executors of your will and if possible, let those people know that you intend to appoint them as executors in case they have any concerns or objections. It is very helpful and time efficient, if you can come equipped to your meeting with a note of your executors' and beneficiaries' full names and addresses.
We encourage clients to think about their funeral wishes and whether they would like to include these in their will. Funeral wishes stated in a will are not legally enforceable but they give your executors a good indication of what you wanted when you made your will.
Many clients do not realise that a competent solicitor will need to made enquiries about what assets you hold and what the value of your estate is. This information helps the solicitor assess whether you require any inheritance tax planning advice and whether you satisfy one of the legal requirements of capacity to make a will; knowing the extent of your estate. For this reason, we recommend that you take some time to consider the approximate value of your assets ahead of the will meeting.
Finally, if you have minor children, it is important that you consider who you want to appoint as their legal guardian in the event of your death. If you are leaving gift to a minor beneficiary, it is important to consider who you want to appoint as their trustee (someone who will accept their inheritance on their behalf, if it becomes due when they are still a minor ) until they reach the age of 18.