Ensuring Smooth Administration of Your Will
There are a number of steps that you, as the Testator, (the person making a will) can take to make the administration of your estate run smoothly, such as:
1. Make a valid Will with a Solicitor
To ensure that your estate is administered in accordance with your wishes and without any legal complication, you should make a Will with the benefit of legal advice. We will keep records of your Will appointments which will offer protection for your Will and your wishes.
2. Keep your Will safe
We will retain your original Will in our Will Safe and send you a copy of same. In the event that you wish to keep the original Will you should keep it in a safe and ensure that it does not get misplaced. It is important to note that in the event that a Will goes missing in the possession of the Testator, the law presumes that the Testator destroyed the Will with the intent to destroy it meaning it is no longer valid (unless there is evidence to rebut this presumption).
3. Collect previous Wills
In the event that you have made previous Wills these will be taken up by us and destroyed by you or be retained by us with your current Will.
4. Review your Will regularly
You should review your Will regularly to ensure that it is accurate in terms of your current wishes and takes account of any change of family or financial circumstances. You should be particularly careful that your Will is not revoked by any subsequent marriage as this will occur automatically unless your Will is made in contemplation of marriage.
5. Select suitable Executors
You should select suitable executors that you trust to complete the administration of your estate in a timely manner and if choosing more than one you should choose Executors who get along and will not be in dispute.
6. Tell your Executors where your Will is held
We never recommend that our clients reveal the contents of their Will to anyone as the document is a confidential and legally privileged one. Further, once the contents of the Will are made known to beneficiaries, clients often feel that they cannot change their mind even if they wish to. For this reason, we will give you bespoke J R PLUNKETT Executor notification cards for you to give your Executors which will advise them of the location of the Will in the event of your passing.
7. Consider your funeral wishes
If you have particular wishes as regarding your funeral these can be included in your Will. However, you should note that often Wills are not read in advance of funerals taking place and therefore you should alert your Executors or next of kin in relation to your wishes.
8. Keep clear records
You should keep a clear record of your financial affairs with your personal effects. When you make your will with us we will give you a Pre-Meeting Questionnaire which will assist you in documenting your financial affairs. This record can be kept with your financial documents and also with your original Will in our Will Safe. These records will assist you Executors in confirming your assets and dealing with them in accordance with your wishes.
9. Consider what you want to happen your personal effects
If you have particularly valuable items you should specifically refer to them in the Will to ensure they will pass to your nominated beneficiaries. Otherwise, if you have personal items, such as clothing, you may wish to direct that they should be given to a particular charity shop etc. This can assist your Executors when dealing with your estate. It is also possible to give your Executors the discretion to distribute items of sentimental value from your personal effects to friends and family that may request same. These are items of nominal value only.
10. Keep your affairs in order
The role for your Executors will be to locate all of your assets and liabilities, gather in the assets and discharge any debts and funeral expenses and then distribute your estate to your chosen beneficiaries. In the event that you leave your affairs in a mess, the administration of your estate will be messy for your executors. Therefore, you should ensure that all title to the property is in order, all financial records, such as prize bonds, savings certs, share certificates, are located and there are no disputes in connection with your assets. You should also ensure that your tax affairs are in order.
Your thoughtfulness will be appreciated by your executors as often executors find it difficult to act due to their grief. If you would like any information on making a Will of the administration of estates contact JR Plunkett on 01 234 3732 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.