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Your will is the legal document that says how you want your estate to be distributed on your death.  It allows you to appoint a person or people called executors to carry out your wishes.  If you die without a will, the laws of intestacy will apply – in other words, how your estate is distributed is determined by predetermined formula set out in legislation. Your estate will not automatically go to a surviving spouse or your children.  

If you die without a will and have children under the age of 18, their share of your estate must be paid into Public Trustee.   Until your children turn 18, Public Trustee will manage their inheritance and determine what will be paid out for them.
It is important to remember that your will deals only with your assets – so if you own property as a joint tenant with someone else, that property passes automatically to the surviving tenant regardless of what your will says or the application of the rules of intestacy. That is to say, jointly owned property is not included as part of your estate.

However, if you hold property as a tenant in common (that is, property co-owned through having a share in it), you can deal with your share in your will – your share would pass to your beneficiaries as part of your estate.

of Wills on Wheels, is able to work with you to prepare or update your will as well as other estate planning documents.  As the name suggests, is a mobile solicitor and will visit you in your own home or in hospital or retirement village

“It is always better to make sure you have a will.  That way you can make your own decisions about who you wish to receive part or all of your estate.  You can also choose to benefit your favourite charity, a friend or a remote relative who may not be included under the intestacy rules” .  “You will also save your family and loved ones a great deal of administrative work, anxiety and pain if you have left a clear will, rather than making them go through the process of establishing themselves as eligible relatives under the intestacy rules, and the associated costs would most likely, be taken from your estate, increasing the costs of administration – meaning less for beneficiaries”.

“The lesson….Make your will….while you can!”

Dying Without A Will

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