Wills and Powers of Attorney
Every adult should make a Will (and keep it up to date). Without a Will, if a person dies their property is distributed in accordance with the inflexible “rules of intestacy”, which are extremely unlikely to be how they would have wanted it distributed.
In particular, those laws do not make adequate provision for a spouse, where children are also involved – and they make no provision at all for couples who are unmarried (or not in a civil partnership).
A Will overcomes these problems and more. Even if you decide not to use a lawyer to draft your Will, but do it yourself, that will (probably) be better than no Will at all, as long as it is clear and properly signed and witnessed.
Fuller details of what can be covered, and the procedure we use to make clients’ Wills, are set out in our page for wills.
A Will covers what happens to your property when you die, but cannot help if you become mentally or physically incapable of managing your own affairs – if you are in a coma, for instance. To cover those circumstances, we recommend you make a Lasting Power of Attorney (“LPA”) – our page on Powers of Attorney gives more information – and this is an area where it is perfectly possible for most people to “do it yourself” (we include a link to the forms in our notes).