Making a Will

A Will lets you leave clear instructions about how your estate is to be distributed. Without one your estate may be subject to intestacy rules and your estate may not go to the people you had hoped.

A Will lets you choose your own executors. If you die without one, your closest relatives will need to apply for ‘letters of administration’. It also lets you appoint guardians to look after your children if they are under 18, until they come of age and make financial arrangements for their benefit.

A Will allows you to make specific bequests to individuals, ranging from items of jewellery to sums of cash.

If you have remarried, you can also ensure any children from your first marriage get a share of your estate.

    The dangers of not making a Will

    Without having a Will in place there are many risks and unknowns. Unmarried partners may not receive anything from your estate, unless you have made a Will in their favour and If your estate is divided according to the intestacy rules, your spouse or civil partner may not receive as much as you would have intended them to.

    If you die without leaving a Will and have no spouse or children, your parents or siblings may inherit your estate, even if you’d prefer it to go elsewhere, which can often lead to family disputes.

    Your family could face a larger inheritance tax bill than necessary as a Will can help with the tax-planning process.

    Power of Attorney

    Did you know that if you become unable to make decisions for yourself – because of illness or injury for example – no-one else can make those decisions for you, unless you have given them legal powers to do so?

    Everyone is being encouraged to “Start the Conversation” with their loved ones as the first step to giving Power of Attorney to someone they trust.

    Power of Attorney can cover your financial affairs (e.g. managing your bank account) and your welfare (e.g. deciding where you will live if you are no longer able to decide for yourself).

    Starting the conversation about Power of Attorney is one of the most important things any of us can do with our loved ones and friends and family, it must be a priority for every adult across Scotland. Taking action and appointing Power of Attorney, you will protect yourself and those closest to you by granting legal powers to act on your behalf if something were to happen to you

    A Power of Attorney is a written, legal document giving someone else (your Attorney), authority to take actions or make decisions on your behalf (the granter). You choose the person(s) you want to act as your Attorney and what powers you want the Attorney to have. A Power of Attorney is intended to ensure that your financial affairs and personal welfare can still be dealt with/protected in the event of you being unable to act on your own behalf.

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