Making a Will

Get Help With Making a Will

Writing a will might not be top of our 'to do' list, however there are very good reasons why having a valid will is so important. The following page explains why we should all make a will and how our expert will writing solicitors at Osbornes Law can help.

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  • “Far better value for money than many firms with more expensive addresses. Serious knowledge of the law and committed engagement with their clients.”

  • “Jan is an expert in international probate work and is praised for a sensible and pragmatic approach to cases.”

Why making a will is so important

Throughout our adult lives, we are encouraged to take the time to make a Will. This is so important, for the following reasons:

  1. If you die without a Will, there are rules which will dictate how your Estate (money, property, land, other possessions) should be allocated. When making a will, ensure that your wishes are very clear.
  2. If your current Will is poorly drafted or is out of date, there is no guarantee your assets and possessions will pass onto those people you wanted to inherit from you. This can cause more stress and perhaps financial difficulty for those left behind. Disputes relating to Wills can be costly and time-consuming to resolve.
  3. When writing a Will you can also state who you wish to be responsible for distributing your assets and, if needed, identify who will be the guardian of your children, if they are under 18 years of age.
  4. Unmarried partners and those partners who have not registered a civil partnership cannot inherit from each other unless they have a Will. Not making a Will may create serious financial problems for the remaining partner.
  5. You may be able to reduce the amount of inheritance tax payable if you take advice in advance of your death and a Will is prepared.
  6. Your circumstances may have changed, for example, you may have separated and your ex-partner is living with someone else.

Speak to a lawyer today

For a free initial conversation call 020 7485 8811

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    • "I wish to thank you for your advice, efficiency and professionalism throughout which has been greatly appreciated."

      Client review

    • "I am proud to be a private client of Osbornes Solicitors LLP, a client of many years. I appreciate the swift and efficient work of the Private Client Department Team."

      Client

    • "Jan Atkinson, with her steely, steady, calming presence, instils confidence in the most highly-strung of us clients. With her masterful knowledge of the law, old and new, and its application, Jan can navigate through the most complex of cases to a successful end."

      Legal 500 2021

    • "I find Osbornes’ client-friendly approach welcoming and refreshing"

      Legal 500 2021

    • "A medium-sized London firm dealing with big litigation and doing it extremely well because of a depth of expertise and experience."

      Legal 500 2021

    • My family had the pleasure of Jan Atkinson working with us on the will and probate issues of [my mother's] estate in Camden and Ireland after she passed on last year. Jan and her assistant(s) offered us a fantastic service at a sad time.

      Client Review

    • "Jan Atkinson stands out for her wide-ranging knowledge and experience of estates; whatever problem you throw at her, she has seen it all before and is able to find a creative and sustainable solution. She has exceptional commitment to her clients and explores every avenue to find the best solution for them"

      Legal 500 2021 - Jan Atkinson

    • The team is very caring, experienced and detailed and was clear about the  next steps and offered very helpful advice and suggestions

      Legal 500

    • Jan Atkinson has extensive experience in private client matters, which underpins her excellent skills in the contentious probate area. Plus she is strong on international matters

      Legal 500 2020 - Jan Atkinson

    • A small but formidable team, punching above its weight. Jan Atkinson is a seasoned pro. Approachable but no push-over

      Legal 500 2020 - Jan Atkinson

    • "They are an outstanding firm to work with. They are consistently impressive in their work."

      Chambers UK

    • "Elspeth Neilson is very reliable and practical."

      The Legal 500

    • "The team frequently deals with cross-border estates for high–net-worth individuals."

      The Legal 500

    • "The team were extremely professional in putting my needs first. There was a joined-up approach to catering for the client, and all lawyers involved were briefed and constructive."

      Chambers UK

    • The situation was handled by your extremely competent, efficient hands - I would not hesitate to recommend Osbornes to others.

      Wills, Probate and Disputed Estate Client

    • "Service prompt and effective. I have absolute confidence in Maggie."

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • I am happy with the service that I got and would recommend you to other potential clients.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • I found Osbornes always very helpful and efficient.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • We are very pleased with the services of Osbornes. Highly professional and through with close attention to detail.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • I would highly recommend Jan Atkinson in any probate matter and Osbornes Solicitors in any other legal matters.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • Jan Atkinson is a very proficient lady whom I would highly recommend to anyone involved in probates.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • Thanks for all your work and explaining everything so clearly. For any legal matters in the future I would not hesitate in instructing Osbornes.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • We have found your service to date as the most informative we have come across.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • Osbornes Solicitors always responded promptly to any request for information I had.

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • “Geoffrey’s affairs were dealt with just the right combination of friendliness and professionalism, which really helped.”

       

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates Client

    • Jan Atkinson is confident with a straightforward approach. Her practice covers both contentious and non-contentious matters, including wealth planning and estate administration.

      Chambers UK

    • I would like to thank everyone in my case for the excellent job!

      Wills, Probate & Disputed Estates client

    Writing a Will FAQs

    What age should I be when I make my Will?

    To make a Will in England and Wales you must be 18 years or over. There are only two categories that are legally allowed to make a Will under the age of 18 – soldiers on active duty or sailors at sea. There is no upper limit to making a Will but you must be of ‘sound mind’. The legal term is ‘sound testamentary capacity’, which means you understand the extent of your estate and that you are giving your assets to particular beneficiaries. You may feel that when you are making your Will, your mental capacity may be questioned. If you feel this may be the case a medical practitioner may be asked to confirm that you have capacity.

    Do I need a solicitor to write a Will?

    If you wish to make a Will yourself you can do so. Your Will does however need to comply with the Wills Act 1837 to be valid. Our specialist team have, over the years, dealt with disputes surrounding homemade Wills and those prepared by untrained and unregulated Will writers. Disputes can be time consuming and costly to resolve and in some circumstances, disputes can only be resolved by the courts.

    What should I consider when making a Will?

    • Personal information: bring together all key and relevant personal information

     Your assets and possessions: What items of value do you own. This can include digital assets such as social media accounts Bring together a full list – you may wish to use our questionnaire to help with the process

    • Who will be your beneficiaries? You will need to consider who you wish to bequeath items to. You may wish to leave everything to one person but, thought must then be given to what happens to your estate should the main beneficiary die before you.

    Specific gifts: You may wish to leave personal items to certain people or organisations. Full details (names and addresses of all your beneficiaries will be needed)

    • Donations and Gifts to charities: These are normally exempt from Inheritance Tax.

    • Executors: You will need to consider and decide who to appoint as your Executors, who will deal with your affairs following your death. This is an important role so it is important to choose someone who is trustworthy and capable of the task. One or more people can be chosen. If you would prefer a professional to undertake the task or are struggling to think of someone who you know to take on the role, you may appoint a professional Executor. Osbornes accept executorship appointments.

    • Children: provisions will need to be made if you have children under the age of 18. These provisions include naming a Guardian to be responsible for your children and putting in place financial arrangements such as a Trust.

    • Other Wishes: Within your Will you will have the opportunity to detail any other wishes you may have. These may include particular wishes you have regarding your funeral.

    What happens if I don't make a Will?

    Making a Will is the only way that you can make sure your money, property, possessions and investments go to your family, friends, other people and causes you care about. Your property, possession and investments are known as your Estate.

    What is the cost of making a Will?

    We offer a fixed rate charge of £650+VAT for the preparation of a straightforward Will. However, if the Estate and requirements are more complex, for example tax, or asset advice is needed, or there are assets abroad then an hourly rate will be charged. This will be discussed and confirmed with you during your discussions with your solicitor.

     

    How do I have my Will witnesses during Covid-19?

    The government have made it possible for individuals to have their will witnessed remotely during the Covid-19 pandemic. This Remote Will Witnessing Article explains the process and the steps you can take to ensure you have a valid will.

    Why Choose Osbornes Law to help you write a Will?

    • Our specialist team comprises highly experienced solicitors. Osbornes Law is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and a number of our lawyers belong to the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).
    • We have the ‘Wills and Inheritance Quality Scheme’ kitemark, accredited by The Law Society.
    • Our Will writing services are affordable and our teams are highly efficient in drafting with very little fuss.
    • We can prepare wills specifically tailored to your circumstances and can advise on matters such as the ownership of companies, digital assets, literary and intellectual property estates, and foreign property. We can also take steps to avoid a potential dispute arising.

    How Osbornes Law can help with making a Will?

    Call us to discuss your particular needs and situation and we match the right specialist solicitor to assist you and guide you through the process of making a will.

    We offer a fixed rate charge of £595+VAT for the preparation of a straightforward Will. However, if the Estate and requirements are more complex, for example tax, or asset advice is needed, or there are assets abroad then an hourly rate will be charged. This will be discussed and confirmed with you during your discussions with your solicitor.

    Our Will questionnaire is available here to complete and return to willsonline@osborneslaw.com

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    Speak to a lawyer today

    For a free initial conversation call 020 7485 8811

    Email us Send us an email and we’ll get back to you