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Types of Wills

Rather than just one standard document, several types of Wills are available to reflect an individual’s circumstances, wishes and objectives.

Single Will

A single Will almost inevitably includes detailing your choice of Executors, who will ensure that your instructions included in the document will be carried out, and the names of any Guardians, who may perhaps take over the parenting of any children you may have, in the event of your early death.

In addition, instructions regarding your funeral, the distribution of your Estate and any gifts, legacies or Trusts you’d like to set up can be established here.

If you feel your wishes and circumstances of your Estate are relatively straightforward, a single Will is normally sufficient for your needs.

Mirror Wills

If you would prefer to include your spouse or partner in your Estate planning, passing your assets to them in the event of your death and vice versa, then this can be reflected in the production of Mirror Wills.  These generally indicate that if either of you dies, the entire Estate will be passed to the other, with subsequent beneficiary instructions coming into play on the event of their death.

Discretionary Trust Wills

If you know that your Estate is likely to be heavily taxed with Inheritance Tax in the event of your death, it would be wise to review this now and plan accordingly to minimise the amount to be taxed as much as possible.  A Discretionary Trust Will endeavours to do just that, offering long term asset protection whilst keeping your options as open, so that the bulk of your money will transfer to your beneficiaries, rather than to the tax man.

Property Trust Will

If the focus of your Estate lies solely on your property, it may be worth your while considering the prospect of preparing a Property Trust Will.

With care home fees continuing to soar, this type of Will is becoming more common, as many elderly individuals are forced to consider selling their home to pay for nursing costs.   Alternatively, if you have remarried and it does not necessarily follow that your children will receive the benefits of your Estate,  this type of Will gives you greater control about what should happen with the proceeds from the sale of your home.

Although DIY Wills are of course now available online, this course of action should only be considered by those who have an uncomplicated Estate and whose wishes are relatively standard.  It is usually advised that in order to ensure that your Will is completely legal and accurately reflects your wishes, you should consult a Will writing professional.

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