There are many ways of coming in to sudden wealth and there are many ways of losing sudden wealth, if one is not careful. If you have come into some unexpected funds, whether this be through gifting, inheritance, premium bond prizes or even a lucky gambling pay-out there may well be lots of thoughts running through your mind on how that money may be helpful to you now. You may also consider how that money may benefit your loved ones in the future, and the tax implications on those receiving funds. The simplest way of ensuring that your estate passes to your family and friends or to those whom you believe should inherit when you are gone, is to make a Will. If you currently have a Will and your financial circumstances have dramatically changed you may wish to increase various legacies or choose to benefit charities which you have previously felt financially unable to support.
Recent reports show that 3 in 5 adults in the UK have not made a Will. Without a Will the ‘’Intestacy Rules’’ will apply after they have passed. This could mean that a long-term unmarried partner or a loyal friend who has been there for you may not inherit, even though you wished for them to do so. Without a Will there is a rigid list of a spouse and blood relatives who will inherit and in what order. Although it is possible to create a new Will by varying the terms of the intestacy it will be for each of the eligible beneficiaries to agree to this. Unfortunately. this isn’t so easy where family members believe they are owed the money.
After considering whether you might like to make a Will, it is also important to think about who may look after your money should you be incapable of doing so yourself during your lifetime due to lack of mental capacity or the physical ability to deal with your financial affairs. Appointing ‘’Attorneys’’ through a Lasting Power of Attorney document to deal with these affairs gives you control.
If you would like to discuss any of the above, please do not hesitate to contact our Private Client Team.
Back to all articles