Making a Will in the UK

Making a Will in the UK

If you die without a Will this could create serious problems for those left behind. A Will is a legal document which appoints the people responsible for dealing with your estate after your death and passes your assets to the people or organisations that you want to benefit. Why leave all your assets to be distributed through the intestatcy rules when this can easily be avoided by MAKING A WILL?

At Crane & Walton LLP we recommend that you make a Will. You should also review your existing Will following any significant change in your personal or financial circumstances, and particularly when divorce or separation are a possibility.

Important considerations when making a Will are:

• Choice of Executors, the people legally responsible for carrying out the terms expressed in your Will.
• Choice of guardians to look after your children.
• Who is to benefit from your estate?  If you want to leave your estate to your children, at what age would you want them to inherit?  Do any children have special needs to be provided for?
• Who is to inherit your personal possessions?
• What is to happen to your estate if your children die before or at the same time as you?  Who would you want to benefit?
• Will any Inheritance Tax be payable and, if so, can it be reduced by inheritance tax reliefs available for business assets and agricultural property?



Impact of Divorce
If you have a Will and divorce (or your marriage is annulled or declared void) the appointment of the former spouse as executor in the Will no longer takes effect, and any gift to the former spouse will generally lapse.

Impact of marriage
If you marry after making a Will, the marriage automatically revokes your existing Will (unless specific provision is made in the Will).

Most married couples own property jointly so that it passes automatically to the survivor on death as it is owned as “beneficial joint tenants”. If you divorce or separate,  you may wish to leave your respective share in the property to someone else. To do this you need to “sever” the tenancy in the property, so that you own the property as “tenants in common”. Our Solicitors can deal with the “severance” on your behalf.

What happens if you die without a Will?

If you die without a Will in the UK you die “intestate”, which means that your estate is administered in accordance with the Intestacy Rules.


The Intestacy Rules may not allocate your estate and possessions in accordance with your wishes, resulting in your nearest and dearest not benefiting as you would wish. For example, if you leave assets worth more than £250,000.00 (£450,000.00 if you have no children) your husband or wife will not be the only beneficiary of your estate. In many households the family home is in the name of one spouse and, if it is worth more than £250,000.00, it may have to be sold in order to make payments to other relatives, potentially leaving the surviving spouse homeless.


Additionally, couples living together and partners who have not registered a Civil Partnership have no automatic right to a share of their partner’s estate on death under the Intestacy Rules. If you are separated or your divorce has yet to be finalised, your spouse is still entitled to inherit from your estate. Further, the Intestacy Rules do not make provision for stepchildren of the deceased.


At Crane & Walton LLP our Wills and Trusts Solicitors will ensure that the beneficiaries you have chosen inherit your estate as you direct.


Making a Will is the only way anyone has of providing for others after their death.  Our Will Writing Solicitors will help you plan for the transfer of your estate and possessions on death, taking into account your personal, family, business and financial circumstances.  We will guide you through the options available and advise on the tax consequences of your proposals to ensure the smooth transfer of wealth from one generation to the next.

30 South Street
Ashby de la Zouch
LE65 1BT

Telephone: 01530 414111
Fax: 01530 417022
Office Hours: 9:00am to 5.00pm
113 - 117 London Road

Telephone: 0116 2551901
Fax: 0116 2555864
Office Hours: 9:15am to 5.00pm
21 - 25 London Road
LE67 3JB

Telephone: 01530 834466
Fax: 01530 810886
Office Hours: 9:00am to 5.00pm
William's Yard, Derby Road
DE73 8JR

Telephone: 01332 863810

Office Hours: 9:00am to 5.00pm
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