Small bequests - how annoying for executor?

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  • Silvertabby
    Silvertabby Posts: 9,016 Forumite
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    edited 11 December 2023 at 4:04PM
    Thanks everyone!

    I don't know why I thought it was so bad,  I think I thought you had to ID everyone?

    The 2k would be a fair proportion of our savings (current about 50k each) but there's also a fully paid off house and some DC pensions. I guess we'll want to think about what we'd do if we'd just spent all our savings on an extension if whatever. In that case I'd anticipate the survivor using pension money to make up any shortfall in the gifts, or if we both go there would be money from the house sale. I'd rather not do percentages just now in case it ended up with bigger gifts than we wanted through possible inheritances, death in service from first death, and so on. 

    And yes I fully anticipate that if I die now there's a good chance that my money will go to a new partner and some step kids, in an ideal world my spouse did want kids but it wasn't to be, so they're very welcome to spend my money that way.

    You do.  I assume that you didn't intend to just say "£2K each to our/my nieces and nephews", because your executor certainly wouldn't thank you for that! 
    Rather than update the Will itself every time one of the beneficiaries moves/gets married and changes their name, you may be able to add something like a codicil (If I'm wrong, I'm sure someone will correct me!) listing all the nieces/nephews by name and address, updated as and when necessary.
    A little off piste, but harking back to  my LGPS days....  A LGPS survivor's pension was only paid to an eligible spouse/partner/child, but a one-off lump sum death benefit  (only paid pre-retirement or within the post-retirement guarantee period) could be left to anyone.  The nomination form confirmed that the death grant could be left to  more than one beneficiary. as long as each beneficiary was clearly identified and that the total %ages of the death grants left to each individual added up to exactly 100%.  The form had 6 lines, but most people rarely nominated more than 3 people.  Except for this chap...........he made multiple copies of the form, and listed 28 beneficiaries, with the allotted percentages ranging from 1% to 5%.  Thankfully, he was still alive when I retired! 
  • doodling
    doodling Posts: 999 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    Hi,

    Thanks everyone!

    I don't know why I thought it was so bad,  I think I thought you had to ID everyone?

    The 2k would be a fair proportion of our savings (current about 50k each) but there's also a fully paid off house and some DC pensions. I guess we'll want to think about what we'd do if we'd just spent all our savings on an extension if whatever. In that case I'd anticipate the survivor using pension money to make up any shortfall in the gifts, or if we both go there would be money from the house sale. I'd rather not do percentages just now in case it ended up with bigger gifts than we wanted through possible inheritances, death in service from first death, and so on. 

    And yes I fully anticipate that if I die now there's a good chance that my money will go to a new partner and some step kids, in an ideal world my spouse did want kids but it wasn't to be, so they're very welcome to spend my money that way.

    You do.  I assume that you didn't intend to just say "£2K each to our/my nieces and nephews", because your executor certainly wouldn't thank you for that! 
    Rather than update the Will itself every time one of the beneficiaries moves/gets married and changes their name, you may be able to add something like a codicil (If I'm wrong, I'm sure someone will correct me!) listing all the nieces/nephews by name and address, updated as and when necessary.
    A little off piste, but harking back to  my LGPS days....  A LGPS survivor's pension was only paid to an eligible spouse/partner/child, but a one-off lump sum death benefit  (only paid pre-retirement or within the post-retirement guarantee period) could be left to anyone.  The nomination form confirmed that the death grant could be left to  more than one beneficiary. as long as each beneficiary was clearly identified and that the total %ages of the death grants left to each individual added up to exactly 100%.  The form had 6 lines, but most people rarely nominated more than 3 people.  Except for this chap...........he made multiple copies of the form, and listed 28 beneficiaries, with the allotted percentages ranging from 1% to 5%.  Thankfully, he was still alive when I retired! 
    Strictly speaking you don't need to.list everyone, you could just say "each of my nieces and nephews receives £2k".  You do need to think about exactly what you mean by a niece or a nephew though - what if your brother adopts, or remarries to someone with a child, or has a child in his 60s when you have passed away?  If you think the family is reasonably fixed then listing everyone is easiest but otherwise you need to.be clear what you mean to avoid your executor(s) having a lot of stress trying to work out what you meant.

    If your comment about ID was about whether the executors need to get IDs of beneficiaries before distributing the estate then the answer is that it is entirely up to them.  They are responsible for making sure the right amount of money ends up in the right places, if they don't know people well enough to be sure then they are giving money to the right person then seeing some form of ID might be necessary, if they see everyone every month at family events then there is no need.
  • Re listing people - we would probably just list, everyone is pretty done with their families (though the 6 year old was an oops baby). There is a divorced brother who could have more kids if he remarried but as he'd be one of the major beneficiaries he could even it up from his portion. 

    That is very sensible about ID, I have to anti money launder clients in my job so I thought it would be more onerous. Makes sense that if you know everyone you can just give them the money!!
  • silvercar
    silvercar Posts: 46,951 Ambassador
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    Think what you want to do with those that may arrive after you are gone, my kids got a small inheritance from their great grandmother that none of their cousins received because they weren't born at the time the great grandmother died. The will was written that they shouldn't receive the money until they were 18, by which time they had cousins that were 16, 14 and 11 and miffed! 
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  • Savvy_Sue
    Savvy_Sue Posts: 46,017 Forumite
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    Are any of the siblings 18? If they are, you could consider appointing substitute executors from their number, given that your siblings might have similar life expectancy to you.
    Signature removed for peace of mind
  • Savvy_Sue said:
    Are any of the siblings 18? If they are, you could consider appointing substitute executors from their number, given that your siblings might have similar life expectancy to you.
    Nobody in the younger generation is over 18 yet but we should definitely look at that in the next revision. All our siblings are younger than us so there's some wiggle room. 
  • boingy
    boingy Posts: 1,330 Forumite
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    I think it could be quite a bit of hassle for an executor to track down 14 nieces/nephews, especially if they don't know them very well. You are likely to live another 3 or 4 decades Those kids will have grown up, left home, got married (maybe more than once!), moved house several times and might even be living abroad or be estranged from their family. Some of the surnames will have changed and some of their parents will probably no longer be alive. With 14 to locate I can imagine one or two being more troublesome than all the rest put together. 

    Be sure that your executor is happy to shoulder the burden, not just the nieces/nephews but the whole executor thing, because it really can be a burden even for the simplest estate. We've opted to use a law firm when the second of us dies. It will cost the estate some money but we weren't comfortable placing the responsibility with one of our siblings - they'll (hopefully) be quite old when we go. It is hard to know what to do for the best. 


  • I think you've all persuaded me not to put the 14 kids in the will! Instead we'll work our way down them putting money in their JISAs/ savings or worst case scenario a lump sum at 16/17. Gifts should be within £3k/year and/or out of income, they're very conveniently spread out in age. If we leave a record of what we've done and what we're planning, our executors could choose to finish it off in the unlikely event that we both died in the next 10 years, but we wouldn't consider it a disaster if it didn't all happen.

    Now to actually book that solicitor appointment! We do have existing wills from 2007, it's just that they send money up to a parent, which was appropriate at the time but not what we (or they) would want now. 
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