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Do I need a will?

View profile for Katey  Stephenson
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When someone dies without a will, the intestacy rules are used which set out who receives your estate.

What are the intestacy rules?

The intestacy rules take effect when a person has not made a will or if the will is not legally valid. The deceased’s property and other assets are then distributed between the family in accordance with these rules, which are set by law.

If there are rules in place already, why should I make a will?

An estate can be much more complex to administer without a will. For example, if an unmarried couple decide not to create wills and one of them dies, the survivor would not be entitled to any of their late partner’s estate under the intestacy rules. This applies even if the couple have lived together for many years and have children together.

The intestacy rules do not provide for unmarried partners, step-children or close friends so it is advisable that you create a will to ensure that your estate is distributed in accordance with your own wishes and your family are provided for. In addition, careful estate planning could mean that you are able to mitigate a significantly lower Inheritance Tax bill.

I am based at our Colchester office and can be contacted on 01206 217363 or kKatey.stephenson@birkettlong.co.uk for a free 15 minute chat if you need further advice on creating wills or estate planning.

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