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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Lucia
    • By MSE Lucia 3rd Nov 16, 5:13 PM
    • 9Posts
    • 4Thanks
    MSE Lucia
    Have you suffered from not having a will? Tell us
    • #1
    • 3rd Nov 16, 5:13 PM
    Have you suffered from not having a will? Tell us 3rd Nov 16 at 5:13 PM
    Hi everyone,

    We’d really like to hear from any Forumites who have experienced the effects that not having a will can cause. If you’re happy to share your story, please post in the thread below. If you’ve seen any relevant threads or posts elsewhere on the forum, please do share the links.

    We’re looking to do a feature highlighting that whatever your age, if you've assets eg, a house, savings, or a business, and people or others you'd like to look after it, you should consider making a will; and Will Aid month gives you a chance to do it cheaply.

    Our feature will be in line with Will Aid month, which is a UK-wide scheme that runs every November, where the charity Will Aid teams up with over 900 solicitors to provide basic wills to people of any age. There's no set fee but Will Aid hopes you'll make a donation of around £95 for a single will (£150 for a couple). This is a good price for a solicitor-drafted will but of course if you can’t afford it, you can give less.

    Huge thanks,
    MSE Lucia
    Last edited by MSE Matt; 04-11-2016 at 9:04 AM.
Page 2
    • Mojisola
    • By Mojisola 31st Jan 17, 6:33 PM
    • 28,327 Posts
    • 72,081 Thanks
    Mojisola
    If he dies first then I will make a will, but with an 18 year age difference that's unlikely. And if we die together in an accident then I am deemed to have died first anyway being the elder.
    Originally posted by Nick_C
    If you die together, he won't inherit from you.

    Both of your estates will be divided up among more distant relatives according to the intestate rules.
    • zagfles
    • By zagfles 10th Feb 17, 4:04 PM
    • 12,338 Posts
    • 10,340 Thanks
    zagfles
    Not everyone needs to make a will. But if you do, make sure it is lodged somewhere safe. When my mum died, I searched high and low for a will, but couldn't find anything, although she had previously told me she had made one.

    If you have been married more than once and have children, all the more reason to lodge the will in a safe place. When my grandfather dies, his second wife tore up the will. The same thing happened to a friend of mine.

    Personally, I have no children or living parents, and want my entire estate to pass to my spouse on my death, so living in England there is no need to make a will. Administering a simple estate under the rules of intestacy is straightforward.
    Originally posted by Nick_C
    Yes I deliberately have no will, nor has my wife, or parents. Circumstances are straightforwards and we understand the rules of intestacy. I've helped adminsiter a couple of estates with no will and they were straightforwards, if anything they were easier than if there'd been a will!

    However if you do this make certain to tell people you have no will! Otherwise they'll waste time searching for it.

    If you do make a will - don't make a solicitor or a bank the executor. If you do, they have a monopoly and if they're rubbish, slow, or expensive, your beneficiaries are stuck with them. Make one of the main beneficiaries the executor(s), or a trusted friend/relative. Having asked them first of course. They can always pay for legal help if they need it, and they'll be able to shop around and get rid of any slow/expensive solicitor.

    On a related point make sure you have "expression of wish" forms filled out for any pensions you have, will or no will. Pensions do not (generally) get included in wills so you can't usually leave pensions in a will.
    • Blackbeard of Perranporth
    • By Blackbeard of Perranporth 18th Apr 17, 8:37 PM
    • 4,572 Posts
    • 27,554 Thanks
    Blackbeard of Perranporth
    The birch who married my dad wanted all his money. Fortunately me and big sis were wise to it. We disagreed with his will. Then waited until it went intestate and then settled fifty fifty. Now the birch is out of our lives destitute.
    Watching the trail
    of cheap supermarket bags filled with a lfe gone by
    • Keep pedalling
    • By Keep pedalling 19th Apr 17, 7:33 PM
    • 3,729 Posts
    • 3,993 Thanks
    Keep pedalling
    The birch who married my dad wanted all his money. Fortunately me and big sis were wise to it. We disagreed with his will. Then waited until it went intestate and then settled fifty fifty. Now the birch is out of our lives destitute.
    Originally posted by Blackbeard of Perranporth
    That makes no sense whatsoever.
    • Motre
    • By Motre 20th Apr 17, 11:09 AM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Motre
    Hm, it's a good idea. Thank you!
    • Silvertabby
    • By Silvertabby 28th Apr 17, 3:04 PM
    • 1,629 Posts
    • 1,968 Thanks
    Silvertabby
    “ If he dies first then I will make a will, but with an 18 year age difference that's unlikely. And if we die together in an accident then I am deemed to have died first anyway being the elder.
    Originally posted by Nick_C
    If you die together, he won't inherit from you.

    Both of your estates will be divided up among more distant relatives according to the intestate rules.
    Yes if you die together, then the law decrees that the youngest one died last - and so everything goes to the youngest ones family only.
    • Mojisola
    • By Mojisola 28th Apr 17, 7:10 PM
    • 28,327 Posts
    • 72,081 Thanks
    Mojisola
    Yes if you die together, then the law decrees that the youngest one died last - and so everything goes to the youngest ones family only.
    Originally posted by Silvertabby
    In England and Wales under the Law Reform (Succession) Act 1995 a wife, husband or civil partner does not take a share on intestacy unless he or she survives the deceased for 28 days.
    • JIL
    • By JIL 27th May 17, 8:37 PM
    • 2,745 Posts
    • 18,534 Thanks
    JIL
    I wish there was a way to persuade my elderly parents they need to make a will, they take it for granted that if one goes then the other will inherit the lot. Their wishes are that it will then be divided amongst the three children when the surviving parent dies.
    What happens I ask if one of the children dies before you. They said that the children of that child would have that share.
    I have tried to explain that it is not straight forward.
    Even though they have seen families of their late friends falling out over money as there is no will, there is no talking to them.
    • Mojisola
    • By Mojisola 27th May 17, 9:17 PM
    • 28,327 Posts
    • 72,081 Thanks
    Mojisola
    they take it for granted that if one goes then the other will inherit the lot.

    Their wishes are that it will then be divided amongst the three children when the surviving parent dies.

    What happens I ask if one of the children dies before you. They said that the children of that child would have that share.

    I have tried to explain that it is not straight forward.
    Originally posted by JIL
    It mostly is that straight forward.

    If they have over £250,000 it starts to get bit more complicated in that the children will inherit some on the death of the first parent.
    • Flugelhorn
    • By Flugelhorn 27th May 17, 9:30 PM
    • 581 Posts
    • 785 Thanks
    Flugelhorn
    my grandmother left a will, witnessed but unsigned (goodness knows what her friends thought they were witnessing , certainly not her signature!)

    The beneficiaries under intestacy rules all agreed that the will reflected gran's wishes (leaving it all to one son).

    Deed was drawn up and signed - fortunately gran's nephew was a solicitor and did deed for nothing.

    Would still have been much easier if she had signed it and the witnesses had paid attention!
    • JIL
    • By JIL 31st May 17, 2:08 AM
    • 2,745 Posts
    • 18,534 Thanks
    JIL
    It mostly is that straight forward.

    If they have over £250,000 it starts to get bit more complicated in that the children will inherit some on the death of the first parent.
    Originally posted by Mojisola
    So if I died before my parents, would their estate still be divided by three as they had three children, even though there was only two surviving children?
    Does the £250,000 include the value of the house?
    Appreciate your answers as it could be a bit more information that could persuade them to make a will.
    • zagfles
    • By zagfles 31st May 17, 8:19 AM
    • 12,338 Posts
    • 10,340 Thanks
    zagfles
    So if I died before my parents, would their estate still be divided by three as they had three children, even though there was only two surviving children?
    Originally posted by JIL
    Depends whether you have children. If you do - "your" share gets divided between your children.
    Does the £250,000 include the value of the house?
    If the house is owned as beneficial joint tenants (this is the "usual" way of couples owning a house), then if one of them dies it's completely outside the will/intestacy, the survivor will always inherit it and it won't count towards the £250k. If the house is owned jointly as tenants in common then they each own half the house and if one dies their half the house will count as part of the estate.

    If the only owner dies then it's obviously part of the estate.
    Appreciate your answers as it could be a bit more information that could persuade them to make a will.
    See https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/family/death-and-wills/who-can-inherit-if-there-is-no-will-the-rules-of-intestacy/

    The rules of intestacy are quite sensible and will suit a lot of people.
    • mossstitchmama
    • By mossstitchmama 18th Jul 17, 11:19 PM
    • 245 Posts
    • 131 Thanks
    mossstitchmama
    I didn't lose out from my parents not having a will, but from the remaining parent "losing paperwork".

    My parents had mirror wills drawn up. The family home was divided four ways (tenants in common?), so all four of us owned 1/4 each. On first parents death, their share passed to remaining spouse. On their death, the half was shared equally between myself and one sibling.

    Dad died first (and quite unexpectedly). He had drawn up a Deed of variation which put his shares and money in trust. Mum had access and use of funds whilst alive and then on her death, monies and assets shared equally. All done legally and witnessed but I didn't keep a copy. Dads estate at probate valued at £330,000.00

    Fast forwards ten years. Major falling out (my sister was emotionally and physically abusive to my children). Mum decides to "lose" the deed of variation and make a new, illegal will which leaves nothing to me at all (except the 1/4 of the family home) and the rest to my sister.

    Mums will at probate worth £88,000.00

    My sister and boyfriend had been spending mum's cash on multiple motorbikes and cars, holidays etc.

    I found the solicitor who witnessed the Deed of Variation. She confirmed what it contained but as she didn't draw it up , she had no copy. I spent six months chasing down every legal firm that Dad had dealt with, but as more than six years had passed, no one could find any trace.

    Had to accept that my sister got everything. I didn't even get items of mine that were in the house that had been left to me by Dads family.

    Took me a very long time to accept that I didn't really know my mum and sister at all.
    • SaverSpender
    • By SaverSpender 30th Aug 17, 1:25 PM
    • 3 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    SaverSpender
    My grandfather died having written a will which he had witnessed etc on a template form he bought.
    Unfortunately the will didn't put a box for him to sign his own signature in. So he didn't, thinking he had filled all the boxes in. So although it was signed by witnesses, without his signature it wasn't worth a button. Really annoying as he had tried so hard and actually bought the will template, its not like he just scribbled it somewhere and made a rookie mistake!
    We had to go down the road of probate, which was expensive, and to us we felt it was a total waste of time, as he only had one living daughter and granddaughter, and no other relatives left, so it was fairly obvious where his estate (only worth a couple of thousand) should go.
    What a waste of money, a tenth of it was used in fees, so make sure you sign your will, even if there isn't a box for you to do so!!! If I knew where the template form came from I would have taken them to task, but as it was written twenty years prior I have no clue where it came from.
    • Mojisola
    • By Mojisola 30th Aug 17, 3:59 PM
    • 28,327 Posts
    • 72,081 Thanks
    Mojisola
    My grandfather died having written a will which he had witnessed etc on a template form he bought.

    Unfortunately the will didn't put a box for him to sign his own signature in. So he didn't, thinking he had filled all the boxes in. So although it was signed by witnesses, without his signature it wasn't worth a button.
    Originally posted by SaverSpender
    What did the witnesses think they were witnessing if they hadn't seen him sign his name?
    • bouicca21
    • By bouicca21 5th Oct 17, 7:29 PM
    • 3,138 Posts
    • 3,873 Thanks
    bouicca21
    Several years ago an acquaintance who had been in a long and unhappy marriage was widowed. No will, so the rules of intestacy came into play. The house was solely in her husband's name. It was a rather ordinary 3 bed semi, but at London property values it was well over the limit for the amount due to the widow. She had to scrape together enough cash and borrow some in order to pay the children their share.
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