Looking to Secure Your Family’s Future? Trust Hopkins Solicitors to Draft Your Comprehensive Will.
Don’t Leave It to Chance—Your Legacy Matters, and We’re Here to Safeguard It.
Navigating the complexities of estate planning can be daunting. But it’s not merely a legal obligation; it’s a way to ensure your family’s financial stability and peace of mind. At Hopkins Solicitors, we recognise the importance of your legacy—be it emotional, financial, or both.
Why Hopkins Solicitors is Your Ideal Choice?
- Specialised Expertise: Our wills and estate planning solicitors are highly experienced, with a stellar record of crafting robust wills that stand the test of time.
- Personalised Service: We understand that every family is unique. Our bespoke service aims to address your individual needs, offering you tailored legal solutions.
- Transparent Pricing: No hidden costs. Our pricing structure is straightforward, and we offer a range of options to suit various budgets.
Fear not the complexity of legal terminology or processes. At Hopkins Solicitors, we’re committed to offering clear, compassionate, and practical advice specifically tailored to your circumstances.
Our Simple Wills start from £300+VAT.
Are you married or have a long term Partner? We offer a £150 savings on our Mirror or Joint Wills. Fixed fees start from £450+VAT for both Wills.
Your first step to a secure future is as easy as contacting us.
Understanding the Importance of Writing a Will
Understanding the importance of writing a Will is like laying the foundation for your family’s financial security and peace of mind. A Will isn’t just a legal document; it’s your voice beyond the grave, ensuring your wishes are carried out precisely as you envision. Without one, your estate could be subject to intestacy laws, potentially resulting in assets going to unintended beneficiaries or additional stress for your loved ones.
A well-drafted Will provides clarity and minimises the risk of disputes among heirs. It enables you to appoint guardians for your dependents, distribute assets to specific individuals or causes, and potentially reduce the burden of inheritance tax. At Hopkins Solicitors, we’re here to guide you through this crucial process, ensuring your wishes are legally documented, and your loved ones are protected.
What is a Will?
A Will, simply put, is a legal document that outlines your wishes regarding the distribution of your assets, belongings, and finances after your passing. It’s a clear roadmap that provides guidance to your loved ones, ensuring that your estate is handled precisely as you desire. Crucially, a Will allows you to make your intentions legally binding, reducing the chances of disputes among family members and minimising the stress they may face during an already challenging time.
What to include in your Will:
- Executor: Designate someone you trust as the executor of your estate. This person will be responsible for carrying out the instructions in your Will.
- Beneficiaries: Specify who should receive your assets, property, and possessions after your passing. Be clear and specific about your beneficiaries.
- Guardianship: If you have minor children, name a guardian to take care of them in case both parents pass away before they reach adulthood.
- Assets: List all your assets, including bank accounts, real estate, investments, vehicles, and personal belongings.
- Debts: Include any outstanding debts or liabilities you have, such as mortgages, loans, or credit card debt.
- Funeral and Burial Wishes: You can outline your preferences for your funeral or memorial service and burial or cremation.
- Charitable Bequests: If you wish to leave a portion of your estate to a charity or non-profit organisation, specify the details in your Will.
- Digital Assets: Mention how you want your digital assets, such as social media accounts, online photos, or cryptocurrency, to be handled.
- Specific Bequests: If you have valuable or sentimental items you want to leave to specific individuals, detail these gifts in your Will.
- Contingency Plans: Consider including instructions for what should happen if your beneficiaries pass away before you or if your primary executor is unable to fulfil their duties.
- Residuary Clause: This covers any remaining assets or property not explicitly mentioned in your Will.
- Witnesses: To make your Will legally valid, it usually needs to be signed in the presence of witnesses who can attest to your mental capacity and your voluntary decision-making.
Remember that estate laws can vary by jurisdiction, so it’s advisable to consult with a qualified solicitor like us at Hopkins when creating or updating your Will to ensure it complies with local regulations and effectively represents your wishes.
The Consequences of Dying Without a Will
Dying without a Will, known as dying intestate, can lead to significant complications for your loved ones during an already challenging time. Without clear instructions left behind, your assets may not be distributed according to your wishes. Instead, the law will dictate how your estate is divided, which may not align with your intentions. This can result in protracted legal processes, potential disputes among family members, and additional stress during an already emotional period. Additionally, without a Will, you won’t have the opportunity to appoint a guardian for your minor children or designate specific charitable contributions.
In essence, not having a Will means leaving important decisions to chance. Planning your estate with a carefully drafted Will ensures your wishes are respected, your loved ones are provided for, and your legacy is preserved as you intend. It’s a responsible and considerate step toward securing the future for those you care about.
When is the Best Time to Write a Will?
The best time to write a Will is now. It’s a common misconception that estate planning is only for the elderly or those with vast wealth. In reality, regardless of your age or financial situation, having a Will is crucial. Life is unpredictable, and having a Will ensures that your wishes are documented, your loved ones are cared for, and your assets are distributed as you desire. Delaying this essential task can lead to uncertainties and potential complications for your family in the event of the unexpected. So, don’t wait. Planning your estate by writing a Will is a responsible step that offers peace of mind and security for both you and your loved ones.
How to Write a Will: A Step-by-Step Guide
Valuing Your Estate:
Begin by assessing your assets, including property, savings, investments, and possessions. This step helps you understand the total value of your estate and what can be distributed among your beneficiaries.
Deciding How to Divide Your Estate:
Consider how you’d like your estate divided among your loved ones, friends, or charitable causes. It’s essential to think about your beneficiaries’ needs and wishes.
Choosing Your Executors:
Select trustworthy individuals who will carry out your wishes as outlined in your Will. Executors play a pivotal role in administering your estate, so choose wisely.
Writing Your Will:
With the help of legal experts like Hopkins Solicitors, draft your Will, ensuring it complies with all legal requirements. Be specific in detailing your wishes and how your estate should be distributed.
Signing and Storing Your Will:
Your Will must be signed in the presence of witnesses to make it legally valid. Store it in a secure place and inform your executors of its location. Regularly review and update your Will to reflect any changes in your circumstances.
Making a Will Online: Pros and Cons
Making a Will online can be a convenient option for some, offering accessibility and cost-effectiveness. However, it’s crucial to weigh the pros and cons carefully.
Making a Will online offers convenience, often at a lower cost than traditional methods. These services typically provide user-friendly interfaces and guidance to assist you in creating a Will quickly. They can be particularly suitable for those with straightforward estate planning needs and a desire for simplicity and efficiency.
Online Wills may not encompass all legal intricacies. Mistakes or omissions can result in complications, and they might not adequately address complex family dynamics or changing circumstances. Given the importance of your Will in ensuring your wishes are carried out, consulting with legal experts like us is advisable. Our experienced team can offer personalised guidance, ensuring your Will is legally sound, reflecting your unique circumstances, and providing peace of mind that your estate will be managed as you intend.
The Role of an Executor
An executor is a crucial figure in your Will, responsible for ensuring your wishes are carried out after your passing. This individual or institution takes on the legal duty of managing your estate, including distributing assets to beneficiaries, settling debts, and handling the administrative aspects of your Will. Choosing the right executor is a vital decision, as they should be someone trustworthy, organised, and capable of fulfilling this role effectively. It’s essential to communicate your wishes clearly to your chosen executor and ensure they are willing to accept the responsibility. Our team can provide guidance on selecting the right executor and help you navigate the legal requirements, ensuring your Will accurately reflects your intentions.
Getting Legal Support to Write Your Will
When considering estate planning and writing your Will, seeking legal support is a prudent step. A qualified solicitor can provide invaluable expertise to ensure your Will aligns with your wishes and complies with all legal requirements. They can help navigate complex family situations, minimise potential disputes, and provide clarity in your document. With legal guidance, you can be confident that your Will accurately reflects your intentions, safeguarding your loved ones’ future.
The Cost of Writing a Will
The cost of writing a Will can vary depending on several factors. At Hopkins Solicitors, our starting prices are shown below:
Simple Wills start from £300+VAT
Lasting Powers of Attorney start from £400+VAT
Click the button below and answer a series of questions about your personal circumstances to find out what Will type we recommend you have and exactly what it will cost you.
Changing Your Will: When and How
Life is dynamic, and your circumstances may evolve over time. When this happens, it’s essential to review and update your Will to ensure it remains reflective of your current wishes. Relationships, finances, or family structure changes can impact how you want to distribute your assets. Modifying your Will requires specific legal procedures to maintain its validity. Seeking legal guidance is crucial during this process to navigate complexities and safeguard your intentions.
We understand that life is unpredictable, and we’re here to help you adapt your Will as needed. Whether it’s adding new beneficiaries, altering asset distribution, or addressing any other adjustments, our experienced solicitors can guide you through the process, ensuring your Will remains a reliable reflection of your desires.
The Importance of a Will for Unmarried Couples
Unmarried couples often share a life together, from homes to finances and even raising families. However, in the eyes of the law, they don’t enjoy the same automatic rights and protections as married couples. This makes having a Will even more critical. Without one, your partner may not be entitled to your assets or benefits should the unexpected happen. Writing a Will ensures that your wishes are legally recognised, allowing you to provide for your partner, children, and loved ones precisely as you intend. It’s a powerful way to protect your legacy and offer financial security to those you care about most.
We specialise in helping unmarried couples navigate this essential process, ensuring your wishes are respected and your loved ones are provided for, regardless of your marital status. Your commitment deserves legal recognition, and we’re here to make that happen.
Estate Planning: Beyond the Will
While a Will is a vital cornerstone of estate planning, a comprehensive strategy goes beyond this document. Estate planning encompasses various tools and strategies to protect your assets, reduce tax liabilities, and ensure your legacy aligns with your wishes. It may involve trusts, power of attorney, advanced healthcare directives, and more. These elements work together to safeguard your financial well-being and ensure your healthcare preferences are honoured if you become unable to make decisions.
We understand that estate planning can seem complex, but our expert team is here to simplify the process and tailor a plan that suits your unique needs. Whether you’re just starting to consider estate planning or need to update an existing plan, we’re committed to helping you secure your legacy and provide for your loved ones in the best way possible.
Your Will is more than a legal document; it’s your voice, ensuring your wishes are honoured and your assets are distributed as you see fit. But estate planning goes beyond the Will. It involves comprehensive strategies to safeguard your financial well-being and healthcare preferences. At Hopkins Solicitors, we offer the experience and compassionate support you need in this important process. Our team is dedicated to ensuring your wishes are preserved and that your estate is handled with care and precision, providing you with peace of mind in knowing your legacy is secure.
Wills Fee Calculator
Click the button below and answer a series of questions about your personal circumstances to find out what Will type we recommend you have and exactly what it will cost you.Get a Quote
A Will is a legal document in which a person, known as the Testator, sets out his/her/their wishes for the distribution of their estate after their death. For a Will to be valid it must be in writing and signed by the Testator and two independent adult witnesses.
- To ensure that the people you wish to benefit in the event of your death do so in the ways you want them to – whether that is monetarily or through the inheritance of physical items and heirlooms
- To protect your family from the complex process and old rules of intestacy, that will not take into account unmarried partners or stepchildren
- To protect your young children by appointing guardians to care of them
- To make arrangements regarding who you would like to care of your pets
- To ensure your funeral wishes are adhered to or to ensure your family knows if you have a pre-paid funeral plan
- To reduce the amount of Inheritance Tax or other taxes your beneficiaries would have to pay from your estateNote 1: That a Lasting Power of Attorney is not valid after your death, it does not give legal power to someone to deal with your estate.
Note 2: Although some banks will allow an immediate family member with a death certificate access to your account, it often is dictated by you having only a small amount of money in that account.
Single Will: One Will for a single person
Mirror Will: Two Wills for two people, usually married, that have the same requests
Joint Will: One Will for two people, usually married, that have similar requests
If you have a very small estate and only one beneficiary you may be considering a homemade Will or an online Will. But bear in mind, it will still need to be witnessed by 2 people in order to be valid and it may not necessarily help reduce the tax that will need to be paid from your estate.
The small cost of making a legally binding Will with a Solicitor is worth the investment to ensure your estate is passed on exactly as you wish, especially with today’s complicated family trees and complicated tax laws.
- Any property you own here or abroad and mortgage details
- Home and Life Insurance details
- Bank, Savings and Bond account details
- Private or State Pension details
- Shares and Stock details
- Part ownership in business or property
- Vehicles, loan and insurance details
- Computer passwords and online bank account details and passwords
- Online assets details and passwords to photos, videos, films or music
- Social media passwords
- A list of valuables or heirlooms you want beneficiaries to receive
The legally binding version of your Will should be kept with your Solicitor and a copy kept in a place in your home where your family can easily find it after your death. Your family won’t be notified if you have a Will so it is important you let them know one exists and where to find it.
Our rule of thumb is to review your Will every 5 years for accuracy and any change in circumstances. A lot can change in 5 years, you may have moved home, had more grandchildren, been divorced or remarried, or your beneficiaries may have new contact details.
If you die without a Will, your estate will be distributed according to the laws of intestacy. This means that your assets may not go to the individuals you would have chosen, and it can lead to disputes among your heirs. Writing a Will allows you to maintain control over the distribution of your estate and provide clarity and peace of mind to your loved ones.
Request a Callback
"*" indicates required fields
Meet the Team
Excellent communication and extremely friendly approach
Ian Brailsford, 3rd November 2022
I could not fault the service and professionalism of the team
Dennis Palmer, 3rd November 2022
Abbie had a totally professional but relaxed manner making me feel at ease , she made sure at every stage I understood all the advice she had for me and the need for the questions she had to gain all the information she required to act on my behalf
Graham Robinson, 20th October 2022