To be certain that your final wishes are followed, it is essential to have a Will in place. It will state who you want the assets in your estate to go to. Failing to make a Will can mean the wrong people inherit and increase the likelihood of conflict between your loved ones.
Our Will writing solicitors at Huggins Lewis Foskett can provide expert assistance with creating your Will, estate planning and making sure your estate will be correctly administered when the time comes.
Our Will writing solicitors have years of collective expertise in helping clients navigate drafting a Will in preparation for the future. We have worked with a range of clients, from those with fewer assets to others with higher net worths.
We recognise how challenging it can be to discuss plans for when you are no longer around, so when you are instructing our team to draft your Will, you can be confident in receiving the utmost sensitivity throughout the process.
If you would like to speak to one of our private client solicitors, please don’t hesitate to ring the team on 0208 989 3000 or use our simple contact form to request a call back, and we will be happy to answer your questions.
Why choose Huggins Lewis Foskett for making a Will?
When you work with our Huggins Lewis Foskett solicitors, you can be confident in receiving a proficient but friendly service. We understand how daunting it can be to make arrangements for after you pass, and that’s why we always aim to provide close, personal support throughout, ensuring you are happy each step of the way.
We are Law Society accredited for Wills & Inheritance Quality, providing assurance that we offer an expert service you can trust. Our team includes Joanna Menikou who is a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP), further emphasising our exceptional expertise.
Our making a Will service
Estate planning advice
There are lots of aspects to consider when making a Will, so it’s important to be aware of these. This includes effective estate planning to see how the inheritance tax burden on your estate can be reduced.
Our solicitors want to ensure your heirs receive the maximum benefit from your estate. We take the time to properly review your assets and the value of them, assist you in finding tax-efficient options to reduce the amount of inheritance tax due.
Drafting a Will
Getting the right Will in place with carefully considered terms is really important. Your Will will clearly set out exactly how you wish for your assets wish to be dealt with. This allows you to decide what happens with your estate and who will benefit from it after you pass away.
If you don’t already have a Will in place, our team can help you get sorted, assisting you in putting measures in place for the future. We have an in-depth knowledge of Wills and have worked with a variety of clients with all types of estates.
We know the exact process of creating a valid Will, ensuring it meets your requirements in the best way possible with no ambiguity that could lead to future disputes.
Making amendments to a Will
Circumstances in life can quickly and frequently change. That’s why it is always recommended to review your Will every five years and be certain that it still aligns with your wishes and circumstances. If you get married, divorced, have children, or something else significant happens in your life, it’s important to adjust your Will to suit this.
Our solicitors can take the time to review your existing Will and how we can better amend it to suit your current situation. Should the amendments be straightforward, we can assist in making a codicil. However, if the changes are more complex, we can instead assist in making an entirely new Will.
Who you choose to administer your Will is a decision that must be properly weighed up. Dealing with probate can be quite challenging, so you must be confident that the people you name as the executors of your Will are equal to the task.
Our Wills and Probate solicitors can advise on choosing executors and be ready to support them through probate when the time comes. We can also act as professional executors of your Will if you would like the reassurance of knowing your estate will be administered by experienced experts.
Everything you need to know about making a Will
What makes a Will legally valid?
There is a formal process that must be followed when writing a Will to ensure it is legally valid. The conditions that must be met include:
- You must be at least 18 years old
- The decision to make a Will must be entirely voluntarily
- You must be of sound mind
- The Will must be made in writing
- There must be at least two witnesses over the age of 18 present during the sign, and they additionally will need to sign the Will
- The witnesses must not be beneficiaries of the Will or the spouses/partners of any beneficiaries
How can inheritance tax be reduced?
Inheritance tax will be due on an estate if its value exceeds the ‘nil rate band’ set by the government at the time probate is carried out. The current basic nil rate band is £325,000 (as of the 2022-23 tax year), with an additional £175,000 allowance for your main residence.
By default, the value of your estate above the relevant nil rate band will be liable for inheritance tax at a rate of 40%. However, there are ways inheritance tax can be reduced, including things like who you leave the estate to, and if you are donating to charity.
If you are married and leave either the entirety of your estate or anything over £325,000 to your spouse, you will not be subject to inheritance tax. This means if you want to have your children as beneficiaries, you can still do this and not need to pay inheritance tax.
Another way to reduce the amount of inheritance tax due is to leave at least 10% of your entire estate to a charity.
What happens if you die without a Will?
An individual that dies without having written a Will or who has an invalid Will is recognised as an ‘intestate person’. What this exactly means is that their estate will be distributed following the rules of intestacy.
There are only certain people who can inherit under the rules of intestacy. This includes spouses/civil partners (only if married or in a civil partnership at the time of death), children, grandchildren, and other close relatives such as siblings.
If there is a spouse or civil partnership, how much they will be set to inherit entirely depends on whether there are surviving children, grandchildren or great grandchildren.
If there are surviving children, grandchildren, or great grandchildren, the spouse or civil partner will inherit the deceased person’s entire personal property and belongings, the first £270,000 of the estate, in addition to half of the remaining estate.
However, if there are no surviving children, grandchildren or great grandchildren, the spouse or civil partner will inherit everything, including all personal property and belongings as well as the entirety of the estate.
If there is no spouse or civil partnership, the rules change slightly depending on relatives. Children will inherit everything, and if there are multiple children, this will be equally divided between them.
Do I need a solicitor to make a Will?
While you do not legally require a solicitor to make a Will, it is wise to consider seeking assistance from a solicitor who has helped many other clients in similar circumstances, especially if your estate is more challenging.
It is possible to make a Will online, which some people choose to do for a simple estate, but a solicitor can ensure that everything has been done correctly, making certain the Will is valid, so no future issues occur.
Our making a Will fees in South Woodford, London
Fixed fee for making a Will
For simpler matters, our Will solicitors may be able to charge our services on a fixed fee basis. This allows our clients to have complete certainty over the cost of our services from the start.
Hourly rates for making a Will
Depending on your circumstances and the level of support you need when making a Will, we may need to charge our services hourly.
Our private client team
Speak to our Will writing solicitors in South Woodford, London
Need clear, sensible guidance on making a Will or any related issues?