According to unbiased research from October 2017 60% of UK adults have not made a will, so 31 million UK adults will die intestate. We are also meeting many clients who have not set up lasting power of attorney (LPA).
“It is really worrying that 60% of adults do not have a will. Many adults will shop around to find the best savings rates or use price comparison websites to find the best deal on their energy bills, insurance policies or mobile phones but seem reluctant to write a will. Whatever the reason it is really important that adults make a will to ensure that their estate is distributed according to their wishes. Within our estate planning we discuss wills with clients to make sure it has been set up. When we offer financial advice at a client review we check a client’s circumstances hasn’t changed. If it has we encourage them to review and update their will. Recent legislation allows all couples in England and Wales to choose to have a civil partnership rather than get married. If for example two people entered into a civil partnership we would recommend they review their wills. Wills are really important as they allow you to make gifts to family, friends and charities. You can also use them to do tax planning and reduce the inheritance tax paid after death by using up your available allowances. Writing a will is easy it just involves you making an appointment with a local solicitor. If you require more information please contact your financial adviser.’
‘In our client meetings we also recommend that clients consider setting up lasting power of attorney (LPA). The client chooses an adult over 18 who is called an ‘attorney.’ This person has the legal authority and can make financial or health decisions on their behalf if they are unable to make them. Many people choose a family member, their partner or older children. It is important that everyone reviews their need for an LPA. There is a view that it’s only necessary for older people but we would encourage all clients to review it. When you visit your solicitor to set up a will they often ask if you have lasting powers of attorney set up. The solicitor can offer advice on setting up an LPA and discuss scenarios where it is needed. We often find that clients feel reassured once they have a will and LPA in place, and it may encourage them to be more open and discuss their finances with their children.’
For more information read Simon Prestcote, independent financial adviser, Barnet 'why inheritance tax planning is essential.' Neil Homer – When to involve your family in financial planning.’
The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate will writing services, estate planning or tax planning. The contents of this article are for information purposes only and do not constitute individual advice.