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Planning Retirement Online

Where there's a will...



How to reduce the 2 billion lost in intestacy each year 

Each year in the UK, it is estimated that more than 2billion in inheritance is distributed according to the laws of intestacy, instead of in line with people’s exact wishes. This is largely due to the fact that, of the 610,000 people who die in the UK every year, around 110,000 do so without leaving an up-to-date Will.

Many people assume that if they die without leaving a Will, everything will automatically pass to their spouse. But that is not always the case. Intestacy laws can be complicated and may make no provision for some of the people and causes you care about, such as your favourite charity. Where there are no surviving blood relatives, everything goes straight to the Crown. Bank accounts and joint savings can be frozen until everything is sorted out, leaving families and friends in a difficult position.

Unmarried partners are not guaranteed to receive anything unless it is specified in a Will. Even if a couple has been living together for more than two years, the surviving partner may have to go through lengthy court proceedings before they can receive any share of the Estate. Despite this fact, only an estimated 20% of people currently co-habiting with their partner have a current and valid Will.

Friends and favourite causes can also miss out completely. Around 67% of people in the UK support a charity, but if they don’t make a Will, they are unable to leave anything to a cause that may be important to them. 

To assist older people who are concerned about their own Will and Estate arrangements, Help the Aged provides a FREE comprehensive Will advice service consisting of:

A locally based network of Will & Legacy Advisors across England and Wales, providing guidance on making and changing a Will or leaving a legacy to charities.

A Will information pack containing:  

  • A guide to making or changing a Will, which explains technical terms and answers frequently asked questions;

  • A record of personal documents and information for recording important details, such as who to contact, funeral arrangements, details of bank accounts and pensions, where keys are kept etc;  

  • A solicitor’s checklist, to save time and money when consulting a professional.  

If you have already made a Will, it is vital to keep it updated to take into account  family changes, such as marriage or divorce - which will automatically revoke any pre-existing Wills – as well as births or deaths.  




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