Making a will

Your will is a legal declaration of how you wish your estate (i.e. everything you own) to be distributed after your death. Whatever your age, it’s very important to make a will and register it.

Maybe you think a will is not necessary, as you assume the right people will inherit automatically. Maybe you’ve delayed in making your will, as you don’t expect to die for a long time. Both of these would be big mistakes – the law will not necessarily ‘sort things out’ as you would wish (and will certainly take longer to do it), and unfortunately anyone can suffer an unexpected or premature death. So if you haven’t made a will, the best time is now.

In your will you should assign one or more executors, who will have to apply to the probate registry for a grant of probate (a legal document which confirms the executors’ authority to deal with the assets you have left behind). This will allow them to carry out your written wishes. 

Find out more about making a will using the menu on the left. Then use our search to find a solicitor. You should also ask a financial adviser about issues such as inheritance tax and trusts.

Some questions to ask a solicitor:

  1. How do I choose my executors?
  2. How many executors should I appoint?
  3. How do I appoint guardians for my children?
  4. Why might I need to create a trust?

Some questions to ask a financial adviser:

  1. Can I ensure that money is set aside to pay for my funeral?
  2. If I have money tied up in investments, what happens to it?
  3. How can I minimise inheritance tax?
  4. What are the best ways to distribute my assets?
  5. How do I set up a trust?