A will is a document that sets out how your assets can be distributed in the event of your death.
A will names beneficiaries and can cover other matters such as appointing guardians for your children, and stating your wishes regarding funeral arrangements. It can include the following:
Appointing an executor and trustee who will administer your estate
Instructions regarding how your assets are to be distributed
Instructions regarding funeral arrangements
Appointing guardians for children
Special instructions regarding the age of inheritances
Who can make a Will?
Anyone can create a Will if they are of sound mind, at least 18 years old or married if under the age of 18. It's important to consider the following when writing a Will:
Use experiences professionals such as a trustee company or a solicitor to write the Will in order to make sure it will be legally binding
You will need two independent witnesses to the signing of the Will, in order for it be valid. Witnesses cannot benefit under the Will.
Once you've signed your Will, you will need to remember to review it regularly. Your Will should be reviewed every time your family circumstances change, such as marriage/divorce, birth of children or grandchildren, or where there has been a death in the family.
Most importantly, if you do not already have a Will, or if it is out of date, then it is possible your assets will not be distributed the way you would like. In circumstances such as this, disputes amongst family members could arise, creating expensive and lengthy legal proceedings. So it's vital that your Will is current.