Recent research by Standard Life has discovered that an astounding 25% of people over the age of 65 do not have a will, which means they risk dying leaving their property (or â€˜estateâ€™) subject to the intestacy rules.
Without a valid will, the intestacy rules dictate how your estate is to be divided and for many, the rules do not deal with the division of the estate in an adequate way. Married couples and those in civil partnerships will inherit under the rules, but unmarried and divorced couples lose out. Children will inherit if there is no surviving married partner but if there is, children will only inherit something from the estate if it is worth more than Â£250,000.
The inheritance of other close relatives under the intestacy rules such as grandchildren, parents, brothers and sisters depends on the circumstances including whether there is a surviving married/civil partner and the value of the estate. Many groups are ignored under the rules, including unmarried partners, relatives by marriage and close friends.
The moral of this story is to make sure your estate is not left vulnerable to the dreaded intestacy rules. The only way of ensuring your estate is left to the people you want to have it is to make a valid will.
Should you wish to discuss making a will, please contact me, Eimear McCartan on 0161 615 0691.