While December is a month of giving, it is also a great time to take account of personal finances and begin planning for the year ahead.
In financial planning, there are constants which any good personal financial planner will tick off as they investigate the specific needs of their customers. However, across all customers, there are matters that cannot be avoided in the matrix of sound advice, one of which is the need to impress the importance of preparing a Will.
It is important for everybody to make a Will because if they do not, and die without a will, the law on intestacy decides what happens to their property.
A Will can ensure that proper arrangements are made for dependants and that property is distributed in the way one wishes after for after death, subject to certain rights of spouses/civil partners and children.
It is also advisable to complete and keep an updated a list of personal assets. This will make it easier to identify and trace those assets after death. Keeping that list in a safe place is advisable.
What happens if you die having made a will
If you have made a Will, you are called a testator (male) or testatrix (female). A person who dies having made a valid will is said to have died ‘testate’. If you die testate, then all your possessions will be distributed in the way you set out in your Will. It is the job of the executor or executors you named in your will to make sure this happens. There are legal limits as to how much of your property goes to which person, as set out in law in the Succession Act, 1965. An executor can be a beneficiary under the will. In other words, the executor can also inherit under the will.
Should you create a do-it-yourself Will?
Some people do but one needs to be extremely diligent that they follow the precise requirements laid out in law that decide if a Will is deemed valid or invalid. If you follow the link provided, this will give you all the information you need to make a fully informed decision on whether you create a Will on your own or with the assistance of a professional, such as a solicitor.