To assist with preparing you Will it would be useful to read this list and consider your answers.
Full name of person writing the Will including all middle names.
Date of Birth. Previous names if relevant to insurance policies etc.
Details of the Executor/s this is the person who you are giving permission to deal with your probate application. If married usually Husband / Wife, plus a reserve. If you both died or if one was not up to the task following bereavement. The executor can be a beneficiary.
Think of their Age, remember this Will could be valid for many years. Also where they live, and their ability to carry the task out.
If no one is suitable we can appoint a professional executor.
If children are involved. Name of Guardian (replacement parent). Think of their age and ability to carry out task. One required plus option of a reserve.
If only one do you want to allow them to nominate a successor?
Directions as to upbringing. i.e. religion, vegetarian, etc.
Guardians Name and address.
Do you want your children to inherit EVERYTHING at 18. Or have some control over their inheritance up to the age of 25 i.e. funds released for education etc. Or control of their inheritance beyond 25.
If you want control names of Trustees (people who would carry out your wishes).
Details of any life insurance policies. Are these written in trust.
Amount of mortgage & other major debts
How you want your assets distributed.
If married couple what if you both died, distribution to children/ grand children
If specific items to be left to individuals e.g. ALL my jewellery to XXX or if specific pieces clear description i.e. a 7 diamond cluster ring. Not my engagement ring as this is difficult to identify.
Unless of high value or significant importance it is usually easier to list these items in the “expression of wishes letter” rather than the Will.
Non Beneficiaries Names of anyone who might consider they should inherit, who you are not including in the Will.
Do you own business assets how will they be distributed, is there any business partners.
Provision for pets.
Options are: Gift of Pets: Gift of Pets plus a cash legacy: Pets to be destroyed: Other.
We need the full name and charity registration number.
Beware there are a number of charities that have very similar names i.e. the XXXXXXX trust. XXXXXXX association. XXXXXXX society etc. Many have a popular name and an official name. Check the Charity commission website search function. .
A bequest can only be made where a clear and unequivocal instruction is made.
Any non charities we need full name, address make sure their known name is their official legal title.
It must be absolutely clear who is to benefit “local cats home” could apply to many organisations.
Do you want your organs to be used for transplant purposes?
Do you want your organs to be used for research purposes?
Do you want your organs to be used for transplant & research purposes?
Options are Yes / No / all except eyes.
Burial / cremation / executor to decide.
Directions for scattering of ashes or place of burial or leave to executors
Request donation to charity in place of flowers. See note in bequest re: charities .
If Trust are required Names and address of Trustees
“expression of wishes letter” is a letter you keep with the Will and signed by you it is not as legally binding as a Will but it gives your instructions to your executors we suggest using this for smaller bequest and funeral arrangements etc because if these instruction change you just need to amend your letter and not change your Will.
If there are any terms that you do not fully understand refer to the glossary