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Wills for Parents: What happens to your children if you suddenly die?

It’s not something we want to think about, but did you know that a staggering 60% of parents in the UK do not have a valid will in place?

Those who do have one may find that the will they do have is out of date, making it invalid when the time comes. Having a valid will is the only way you can specify what happens to your children if you pass away before they’re 18 years of age. So it’s important to get one and get it right.

The Importance of a Will As a Parent

There are several reasons why, as a parent, having a will is essential. Firstly, it can be used to appoint a guardian for your children. Knowing who will be looking after your children gives you peace of mind. Without appointing one, it’s up to the courts to decide where they go.

Secondly, it can be used to determine provisions for your children in terms of funding. Being able to leave your children money is important, so ensure you’re leaving them with everything they need to grow up and make a life of their own. A will is also the only way to leave funds for step-children.

Lastly, wills are a way of saving time, money and stress within the family. Planning your death takes away some of the responsibilities which would otherwise be left to grieving loved ones.

How Do I Get a Will Written?

There are three ways in which you can create a will; by writing it yourself, using a specific will writing service  or getting the help of a solicitor.

Although you can write a will yourself, it can be quite complex and confusing. To make it legally binding it would need to be free of errors and be signed by 2 witnesses over the age of 18.

There are also several will writing services available, but it can be difficult to know if they are a member of a recognised trade body. ‘Free’ services can also lead to expensive charges down the line.

The most recommended way to have your will written is to get help from a trusted solicitor. They can ensure documents are correct and legally binding. They may also be able to help you with inheritance tax.

What Happens Without A Will?

It’s important to note that changes in circumstances, such as getting married or having more children can lead to your will being invalid.

Without a will, your estate (such as your investments, money and possessions) will be divided according to intestacy rules – which may not reflect what you wish.

To ensure you, your family and your children are covered; make sure you have a valid will in place. Writing a will, in Southwold or beyond, is our bread and butter.

Find out more about how we can help you write your will by getting in touch. Call us today on 01473 636965 and speak to one of our trained professionals.