If you want to be sure your wishes will be met after you die, then a will is vital. Here are 6 reasons why it's important to make a will.
A will is the only way to make sure your savings and possessions (your estate) go to the people and causes that you care about.
2. Avoiding disputes between relatives
Disputes over wills can cause arguments among family members and may even need a solicitor to resolve them. Leaving a will should remove any doubt about who you want to leave your estate to.
Close relatives and dependants may still be able to make a claim on your estate, but a solicitor can advise you on how likely this is and the best way to prevent it.
3. Looking after your loved ones
Although it’s hard for loved ones to talk about death, talking about your will can save everyone a lot of worry. Deciding who you want to leave your possessions to (your beneficiaries) can help you make sure they go to the people you intended.
4. Protecting your assets for future generations
A will can ensure that assets are kept within the family and are passed on down the generations. Many people are concerned that new spouses or second families will inherit their assets in the future, and a well-structured will can help to prevent this.
5. Saving on Inheritance Tax
With a carefully-planned will, you can also cut the Inheritance Tax bill on your estate after your death.
For example, Inheritance Tax isn’t normally paid on anything you leave to a spouse or civil partner who has their permanent home in the UK. Inheritance Tax is only payable if your estate is worth more than a certain amount. Read more information on Inheritance Tax
6. Your funeral
Your will can be a way to let people know whether you would prefer to be buried or cremated, and the type of funeral service and music you would like.
Paul Lewis on why you should make a will
Paul Lewis, financial expert and presenter of BBC Radio 4's Moneybox, talks about why you should make a will. View a transcript of this video