Writing a Will
I have never made a will before and been meaning to do it for years, what options do I have? How long does it take and how much should it cost? What can go wrong?
First of all congratulations on your decision to make a will as it is a very important tool of estate planning. Ideally writing a Will is a simple process as the only idea behind it is to list your property and your intended beneficiaries. You should also have details of at least two executors who will be in charge of carrying out the directions in the will. You should also have two witnesses who should not be beneficiaries under the Will. The good thing is that none of those individuals has to know the contents of the Will as long as they are aware of the nature of the document they are witnessing to. Be sure to keep a copy with either the executors, a Solicitor or a bank where it can be accessed by the executors.
The only thing you need to be careful about in order for your Will to stand is to make sure you make a provision for all the persons you are responsible for as your dependants especially your children, both legitimate and "illegitimate" and spouse(s). If you leave any of them out, then they will have a right to challenge the Will and have your wishes set aside. As the Will does not need to be registered, two meetings with the Solicitor ought to be enough. The first meeting will entail the briefing while the second meeting is to confirm the contents of the Will and execute. You should also note that a Will only takes effect after death and therefore it is possible for you to revoke the Will at any time or amend it through a Codicil. The Cost varies from one Solicitor to another but may roughly be anything between £300-800 depending on the amount of detail.
Disclaimer: This does in no way constitute legal advice and this info is added for general information and illustration purposes and should not to be used in specific cases. Please seek help from a solicitor as no legal case is identical and the law changes regularly.