Will principles

I'd be grateful for comments about the following minor will dilemma.

The aim is to leave assorted amounts of money in the will to a variable number of people, but the amounts and the people may change as time passes.

It is an expensive pain to get a solicitor to make minor changes to a will every two or three years, as things change.

Would it be possible to leave the entire amount to a trusted executor via a 'fixed' will, together with a Schedule of Amounts and Persons to whom the money should actually go, but which could be updated at random intervals as the need arose?

Possibly (if necessary) the executor could have the will rewritten to match the final Schedule, if this was necessary?

Thoughts, please?

Comments

  • Savvy_Sue
    Savvy_Sue Posts: 46,013 Forumite
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    I'd be grateful for comments about the following minor will dilemma.

    The aim is to leave assorted amounts of money in the will to a variable number of people, but the amounts and the people may change as time passes.

    It is an expensive pain to get a solicitor to make minor changes to a will every two or three years, as things change.

    Would it be possible to leave the entire amount to a trusted executor via a 'fixed' will, together with a Schedule of Amounts and Persons to whom the money should actually go, but which could be updated at random intervals as the need arose?

    Possibly (if necessary) the executor could have the will rewritten to match the final Schedule, if this was necessary?

    Thoughts, please?
    I don't think you can do that: you can leave a 'letter of wishes' which might serve the purpose, but it more often covers things like what to do with the family pet or instructions about making up with your siblings.

    The executor can do a Deed of Variation, BUT that has to be agreed by everyone who is adversely affected. So if the flexible bit says "I want Fred to get £500", and there's no scope for that without taking £250 each from Freda and Freya, they'd have to agree to give up £250 each so that Fred can have his cut.
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  • Savvy_Sue wrote: »
    The executor can do a Deed of Variation, BUT that has to be agreed by everyone who is adversely affected. So if the flexible bit says "I want Fred to get £500", and there's no scope for that without taking £250 each from Freda and Freya, they'd have to agree to give up £250 each so that Fred can have his cut.
    That's why my idea of leaving the whole amount to the Executor to give out according to the (entirely separate) Letter of Wishes/Schedule of Persons and Amounts would give no problem with a Deed of Variation, were one needed!
  • Savvy_Sue
    Savvy_Sue Posts: 46,013 Forumite
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    That's why my idea of leaving the whole amount to the Executor to give out according to the (entirely separate) Letter of Wishes/Schedule of Persons and Amounts would give no problem with a Deed of Variation, were one needed!
    A letter of wishes isn't binding though, plus I think - others will know better - that the gifts then fall into the Executor's estate rather then going straight to the intended recipients.
    Signature removed for peace of mind
  • CLAPTON
    CLAPTON Posts: 41,865 Forumite
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    It costs precisely nothing to change your will

    just a copy it out on a new bit of paper and make the changes to the numbers and get two people to witness it.

    (OK cost of one sheet of paper and some ink)
  • getmore4less
    getmore4less Posts: 46,882 Forumite
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    Savvy_Sue wrote: »
    A letter of wishes isn't binding though, plus I think - others will know better - that the gifts then fall into the Executor's estate rather then going straight to the intended recipients.

    I think the point being made was if the executor is the beneficiary they can do the DOV. Then no gifts.
  • dzug1
    dzug1 Posts: 13,535 Forumite
    First Post Combo Breaker
    I would think it possible that someone could try arguing that the letter is in fact a codicil to the will with the suggestion that it might not be the current one and therefore invalid.


    They might well get nowhere with that but it would be better to avoid the argument in the first place


    It's also possible that the executor might decide that since he has the discretion he can keep the lot for himself


    Better to make a new will - DIY is free


    Perhaps better still to be less fickle about who your money goes to. You sound like the victim in a murder mystery killed before they can change their will again.
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