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  • FIRST POST
    • sunshinesadly
    • By sunshinesadly 12th Oct 16, 8:16 AM
    • 83Posts
    • 21Thanks
    sunshinesadly
    Inheritance - no family - what now?!
    • #1
    • 12th Oct 16, 8:16 AM
    Inheritance - no family - what now?! 12th Oct 16 at 8:16 AM
    I've just read this week's e-newsletter from MSE which talks about the 3 Ds (death, divorce, dementia) encouraging us to make a will, sort out our funerals, and think about 'living wills' or 'lasting power of attorney'.

    I'm keen to get this stuff sorted, but have a problem. I have no one to leave anything to or to take care of my finances etc if I should become demented/infirm.

    I'm in my 50s, no partner, no children, no siblings. What do other people in this situation do when thinking about making a will or making arrangements for ill health in later life (ie who will look after finances etc).

    I'd really like Martin to address these issues at some point. There are many people without immediate family who have finances and futures they would like to sort out.

    Any thoughts gratefully received.
Page 1
    • greatgimpo
    • By greatgimpo 12th Oct 16, 8:26 AM
    • 652 Posts
    • 856 Thanks
    greatgimpo
    • #2
    • 12th Oct 16, 8:26 AM
    • #2
    • 12th Oct 16, 8:26 AM
    Pick a charity or two, their legal department may be able to help as executors to your will too.
    • Yorkshireman99
    • By Yorkshireman99 12th Oct 16, 9:15 AM
    • 1,625 Posts
    • 1,376 Thanks
    Yorkshireman99
    • #3
    • 12th Oct 16, 9:15 AM
    • #3
    • 12th Oct 16, 9:15 AM
    I've just read this week's e-newsletter from MSE which talks about the 3 Ds (death, divorce, dementia) encouraging us to make a will, sort out our funerals, and think about 'living wills' or 'lasting power of attorney'.

    I'm keen to get this stuff sorted, but have a problem. I have no one to leave anything to or to take care of my finances etc if I should become demented/infirm.

    I'm in my 50s, no partner, no children, no siblings. What do other people in this situation do when thinking about making a will or making arrangements for ill health in later life (ie who will look after finances etc).

    I'd really like Martin to address these issues at some point. There are many people without immediate family who have finances and futures they would like to sort out.

    Any thoughts gratefully received.
    Originally posted by sunshinesadly
    Make a will otherwise the government will take it all. I am in a similar situation and have left some bequests to charity but the bulk goes to my best friend's three grandchildren. Their parents are my executors.
    • G_M
    • By G_M 13th Oct 16, 10:54 PM
    • 37,076 Posts
    • 41,025 Thanks
    G_M
    • #4
    • 13th Oct 16, 10:54 PM
    • #4
    • 13th Oct 16, 10:54 PM
    Avoid appointing a professional (solicitor, bank) as Executer of your will unless there is really noone else. Their fees will eat into the estate.

    If you have no family, then what about friends 9both as beneficiaries and/or exectuters?

    Or one or more charities?
    • boliston
    • By boliston 13th Oct 16, 11:09 PM
    • 1,744 Posts
    • 1,293 Thanks
    boliston
    • #5
    • 13th Oct 16, 11:09 PM
    • #5
    • 13th Oct 16, 11:09 PM
    I would avoid using anyone such as a charity as that could create a conflict of interest. I would appoint a solicitor who would not in any way benefit from any residue from my estate (apart from fees for their services of course)
    • TBagpuss
    • By TBagpuss 14th Oct 16, 1:08 PM
    • 4,862 Posts
    • 6,375 Thanks
    TBagpuss
    • #6
    • 14th Oct 16, 1:08 PM
    • #6
    • 14th Oct 16, 1:08 PM
    You don't necessarily have to have the same people for both.

    For powers of atonrey you could think about any close friends you have, or you could appoint a professional such as your solicitor.

    When you draw up a power of attonrney you are able to give guidance, so you can let the person who will be acting know if you have strong views about things - so you could give guidance abut what criteria to consider if they have to chose a nursing home for you, for example.

    In temrs of making a will, think about what you would like to hav happen to your estate - do you have friends / god children you would like to benefit? What aboout charities or campaigns? Local services?
    Once you know who you would want to benefit, you can then decide how to proceed. For instnace, if you were leaving the bulk of your estate to a charity or a campaingning organisation such as Amnesty, you could also apppoint them as executors, or could appoint your solicitor. If you plan to leav esome things to friends, consider appointing a friend, either alone or jointly with your solicitor. Bear in mind than a non-professional executor can't charge for their time, so if you wanted a friend to be your executor becuase you trust them and feel that they would organise things the way you want, consider leaving them something as a thank you for the work you are asking them to do.

    If things like where/whether you are cremeated or buries, or what time of service is conducted are important to you then make sure that you have written down what you would want, and that the people most likely to be involved know what you want - e.g. if you have close friends who you are asking to be your executors, let them know where they can find the information. If you are appointing a solicitor provide it to them, and so on.

    LAthough it is true that solicitors fees can eat into an estate, you have to balance that against whether you have friends who you feel would be willing nad able to do the work, andwho you would feel comfortabl asking. ot solicitros charge an hourly rate so a simple probate need not necessarily be expensiiove.

    A lot depends on how comples your estate is, which relates not only to how you leave your assets, but aslo to what those assets are - if you have lots of small investments and dozens of bank accounts, and your filing system is a heap of paper on the floor, then your estate is going to be more dificult and expensive to asminister than if you have a house and a bank account and an ISA, and all your paperwork is neatly filed and labelled...
    • bugslet
    • By bugslet 14th Oct 16, 1:25 PM
    • 4,528 Posts
    • 23,551 Thanks
    bugslet
    • #7
    • 14th Oct 16, 1:25 PM
    • #7
    • 14th Oct 16, 1:25 PM
    I'm 52 and have no family at all.

    I do have a good friend who has been appointed the executor. She gets a not insignificant bequest and the rest goes to charity.

    She also has power of Attorney for me in case I become incapacitated.
    • exiled_red
    • By exiled_red 15th Oct 16, 3:43 PM
    • 108 Posts
    • 76 Thanks
    exiled_red
    • #8
    • 15th Oct 16, 3:43 PM
    • #8
    • 15th Oct 16, 3:43 PM
    You should write a will and leave your estate to a friend, neighbour or an organisation that you care about. You could also get the friend or neighbour to be the executor.

    You say you don't have family but you could have some that you don't know or don't see that could end up benefiting. A neighbour of my parents died a couple of years ago and the estate ended up being split among about 20 cousins or most likely their kids or grandchildren given the ages, most of whom he hadn't seen for 50+ years if ever. That said I doubt the estate was very big so I guess the solicitor fees probably meant that they got more than any of the beneficiaries.

    Choose someone or some organisation that you care about to benefit from your estate rather than some distance relative that you have never met, a solicitor or the government.
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 15th Oct 16, 3:48 PM
    • 56,000 Posts
    • 321,776 Thanks
    PasturesNew
    • #9
    • 15th Oct 16, 3:48 PM
    • #9
    • 15th Oct 16, 3:48 PM
    Get into family history and find out who your great-grandparents were, then trace their lines down to people alive today .... then, where possible, meet a few of them and see if you like them or not ... they might be really nice people just round the corner that invite you to Xmas ... or they might be nasty sex offenders who live 200 miles away ....

    But there might be one in that bunch that you do like and, maybe, they're closer than you think.

    My 2nd cousin (whatever, it gets complex) ... discovered that her father's first wife's youngest daughter was still alive (and very old) - it was her half sister - and had been only 2 miles from where my 2nd cousin visits when she's in the UK. Qu'elle surprise for both of them!

    She also discovered a girl (~40s) who was the only one left in her family and thought she was the end .... her sibling was dead, her parents had died years ago ... but what she didn't realise was that her grandparents' siblings had children who were "us lot" and so she discovered a "family" of 30-50 people overnight.
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