Failing to think about what will happen to your estate when you die could leave your loved ones with a big financial and administrative headache when you die, as if you don’t have one in place, your estate will be divided according to intestacy laws. These rules mean the people you want to leave your estate to might end up with nothing.
For example, if you’re unmarried and die intestate, even if you have lived with a partner for several decades, they won’t legally be entitled to any of your estate unless you’ve written a will stating you want to leave it to them.
So even if you don’t manage to get a will written this Free Wills Month, make sure you put it at the top of your to-do list. Find out more in our article The importance of writing a will.
Remember too that once you’ve written a will, you can’t just file it away and forget about it. It will need updating as your circumstances change. For example, if you get married or remarried, any existing will is automatically revoked, so you’ll need to make a new one. You can, however, include an ‘expected marriage’ clause in your will, under which you state that marriage won’t revoke the will. Getting divorced doesn’t automatically revoke your will, but any clauses naming your former spouse will no longer be valid.