Single & Mirror Wills, Professional Guidance

Single Wills

A single will is essentially the key format of all wills, it gives the last will and testament of an individual. Wills can be fairly simple statements but must meet certain criteria to be a legal document. Enhanced Wills are generally last will and testaments that include special elements such as Nil Rate Band Trusts, Discretionary Will Trusts, Protective Will Property Trusts.

Who inherits what when you pass on?

Recent research shows that in the South East of England:

  • 90% of adults 18-35 do not have a Last Will and Testament
  • 66% of adults 36-54 do not have a Last Will and Testament
  • 34% of adults 54+ do not have a Last Will and Testament
  • 70% of adults with children under 18 do not have a will in place.

Most people believe their partners would receive everything. This is not always the case. If you die without a will in place the government prioritises who gets your Estate and in what proportions. Furthermore if no one claims your estate then the government will take the lot.

This is even more relevant if you are living with someone but are not married even if you have been together for years.

A Last Will and Testament is the only way to guarantee your wishes

Mirror Wills

A Mirror Will is designed for couples (usually a wife and husband or those in a civil partnership) with similar wishes to make almost identical wills, allowing them to:

  • Appoint people they both trust to be their Executors who will deal with their estate when they die
  • Name who they both wish to benefit from specific possessions or gifts
  • Name who will benefit from their estate
  • Appoint Guardians to look after their children (minors)

Mirror Wills are not ‘Joint Wills’

Technically there is no such thing as a Joint Will; there must be 2 completely separate legal documents relating to each party although they will both have very similar contents that "mirror" each other.

The respective partners usually become both sole beneficiary and executor to each other. When writing Mirror Wills it is essential to add at least one extra executor and beneficiary to each Will to safeguard the estate in the event that both parties die together. The second executor and beneficiary can be the same person in both Wills, or different executors/beneficiaries can be chosen.
From a cost saving perspective mirror wills are ideal for couples who know they want exactly the same or as near as, in their wills, however if there are a number of differences, such as different beneficiaries receiving different chattels from each party then a safer option is a single will for each party.

We are experts in tailoring our service to meet each client's unique needs.
Call: 01794 501 036

Protecting your estate for the love of your family

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