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Wills – frequently asked questionsCreated by Verity in Saving for grandchildren, Saving for you
Why make a will?
Every person over 18 should make a last will and testament setting out their final wishes. It is the only way you can be certain that your estate, malady whatever its value, anabolics is passed on to your loved ones.
It is important to review your will and, if your circumstances change, such as the birth of a grandchild, that your will reflects new decisions you have made in light of these changes. Here are just some of the questions that grandparents ask:
A: If a person does not leave a will then he or she dies ‘intestate’ and the rules of intestacy determine who inherits their estate.
Q: Will my common law partner inherit my estate?
A: If you are not married to your partner and you do not leave a will then your partner is not entitled to inherit.
Q: Does a spouse automatically inherit an estate?
A: This is not necessarily so. Other members of your family may make a claim on your estate.
Q: Who will benefit from my estate?
A: This depends on the value of your estate, whether or not you leave children (grandchildren, great-grandchildren) or other issue such as illegitimate and adopted children, and certain other categories of relatives.
Q: How long does a spouse need to survive to be eligible to inherit?
A: 28 days.
Q: What is the threshold for inheriting my spouse’s estate?
A: If the net estate is not more than £125,000 the spouse inherits the entire estate.
Q: What happens if the net estate is more than £125,000?
A: If the net estate is more than £125,000 the spouse inherits personal effects, the statutory legacy – currently £125,000 – and life interest in half the remaining balance of the estate.
Some useful links
DirectGov: Making a will – This government website gives useful Information on inheritance thresholds and other information on drawing up wills .